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Tag: FBI

FBI Vetting National Guard Troops Who Are Securing Inauguration

U.S. Capitol

By Steve Neavling

The FBI is vetting all 25,000 National Guard troops who are coming to Washington D.C. to secure the inauguration because defense officials are worried about an insider attack. 

The extraordinary undertaking follows the storming of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and reflects the high level of concern over extremism in the military ranks. 

The Army is coordinating with the FBI to vet the service members, The Washington Post reports.

It’s unclear how extensive the vetting will be. 

“There is no place for extremism in the military and we will investigate each report individually and take appropriate action,” the Army said in the statement. “The Army is committed to working closely with the FBI as they identify people who participated in the violent attack on the Capitol to determine if the individuals have any connection to the Army.”

Individuals on FBI’s Terrorist Watch List Were in D.C. During Capitol Riot

Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Photo via Shutterstock.

By Steve Neavling

Dozens of Trump supporters who were in Washington D.C. on the day of the Capitol siege were on the FBI’s terrorist watch list, The Washington Post reports

They were on the Terrorist Screening Database, which lists people flagged as potential security threats. 

A majority of those on the watch list who were in Washington D.C. are suspected white supremacists. 

Their presence raises more questions about the bureau’s response to a protest that led to a violent mob storming the U.S. Capitol. Five deaths have been linked to the insurrection. 

The terrorist watch list includes hundreds of thousands of names. The idea behind the list is to alert law enforcement agencies to suspicious individuals. 

It’s not yet clear whether any of the watch-listed individuals were among the dozens of people arrested so far. 

“The U.S. Government is committed to protecting the United States from terrorist threats and attacks and seeks to do this in a manner that protects the freedoms, privacy and civil rights and liberties of U.S. persons and other individuals with rights under U.S. law,” a U.S. official told The Washington Post

The FBI did not comment for the report. 

FBI Investigating 160+ Related to U.S. Capitol Siege, with Sedition Charges Possible

Alex Gakos/Shutterstock.com

By Steve Neavling

The FBI is investigating more than 160 cases connected to the storming of the U.S. Capitol last week, and federal prosecutors are considering sedition charges against some of them.

During a news conference Tuesday, the FBI and Justice Department pledged to aggressively investigate all leads following the violent riot. 

The bureau has received more than 100,000 videos, photos and other forms of digital media related to the Capitol siege, said Steven D’Antuono, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.

“To be clear, the brutality the American people watched with shock and disbelief on the 6th will not be tolerated by the FBI,” D’Antuono told reporters. “The men and women of the FBI will leave no stone unturned in this investigation.”

Acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin said 70 people have already been charged, and that number is expected to grow into the hundreds. 

To read D’Antuono’s full prepared statements, click here.

FBI Warns of Armed Protests Planned at All 50 State Capitols Ahead of Inauguration

Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Photo via Shutterstock.

By Steve Neavling

An FBI bulletin warns that armed protesters are planning to gather at all 50 state capitols and the U.S. Capitol in the run-up to Inauguration Day.

The bureau also is aware of a group urging protesters to storm local, state and federal government courthouses and administrative buildings if President Trump is ousted from officer before President-elect Joe Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration. 

“The FBI received information about an identified armed group intending to travel to Washington, DC on 16 January,” the bulletin, obtained by ABC News, states. “They have warned that if Congress attempts to remove POTUS via the 25th Amendment, a huge uprising will occur.”

Local police agencies have been advised to boost security at state capitols following the siege at the U.S. Capitol. 

Democrats are calling on Vice President Mike Pence and the Cabinet to remove Trump by invoking the 25th Amendment. In the U.S. House, Democrats are pledging to impeach Trump if he’s not removed by his Cabinet. 

In the meantime, the FBI is investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection and has received about 45,000 digital media tips. 

The storming of the Capitol led to the deaths of at least five people, including Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick. 

Two Democrats Ask FBI to Investigate Trump’s Phone Call with Georgia Officials

President Trump

By Steve Neavling

Two Democrats in the U.S. House are calling on the FBI to investigate President Trump for pressuring Georgia election officials in a phone call to “find” enough votes to overturn his election defeat in the state. 

The Washington Post released audio of the entire call, prompting legal experts to question whether Trump violated the law.

“As members of Congress and former prosecutors, we believe Donald Trump engaged in solicitation of, or conspiracy to commit, a number of election crimes,” Reps. Ted Lieu and Kathleen Rice wrote in a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray.

“We ask you to open an immediate criminal investigation into the president,” they added.

In the call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Trump repeated baseless conspiracy theories. Raffensperger rejected Trump’s claims, saying there is no evidence of widespread election fraud. 

The Democrats said the phone call provided “evidence of election fraud” and said “we are making a criminal referral to you to open an investigation into Mr. Trump.”

Nashville Bombing Suspect Wrote about Lizard People, Other Conspiracy Theories

Anthony Quinn Warner

By Steve Neavling

The suspected Nashville bomber shared his views about conspiracy theories in a series of packages to “acquaintances” around the country, the FBI said.  

FBI agents are investigating letters that Anthony Quinn Warner mailed out before the Christmas morning explosion. 

“We’re aware the suspect sent materials which espoused his viewpoints to several acquaintances throughout the country,” FBI Special Agent Jason Pack said in a statement to the Tennessean

One of the packages was postmarked two days before the bombing and showed up on New Year’s Day, but it did not have a return address, The New York Daily News reports.

The package included two Samsung thumb drives and a typed letter in which he espoused conspiracy theories about the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the moon landing, and alien attacks on the Earth. He also wrote about “reptilians and lizard people that he believed control the earth and had tweaked human DNA.”

“They put a switch into the human brain so they could walk among us and appear human,” Warner wrote.

The FBI says a motive is still unclear and may never be known since Warner died in the explosion. 

‘Most Prolific Serial Killer in U.S. History’ Dies in Prison

Samuel Little, via FBI

By Steve Neavling

Samuel Little, whom the FBI called the “most prolific serial killer in U.S. history,” died Wednesday.

He was 80 years old. 

Little died while serving a life sentence at a state prison in Los Angeles County. 

Authorities have no determined a cause of death, but there has been no evidence of foul play, Vicky Waters, spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, told The New York Times.

Convicted of at least eight murders, Little had confessed to killing 93 people, many of them struggling, young Black women, between 1970 and 2005. The FBI verified at least 50 of those murders. 

For five years, analysts have used the bureau’s Violent Crime Apprehension Program (ViCAP) to link Little to the murders.

The FBI has been urging the public to help with the unconfirmed confessions since declaring Little “the most prolific serial killer in U.S. history” last year. 

“For many years, Samuel Little believed he would not be caught because he thought no one was accounting for his victims,” Christie Palazzolo, a crime analyst with the F.B.I.’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program, said at the time. “Even though he is already in prison, the F.B.I. believes it is important to seek justice for each victim — to close every case possible.”

For a detailed look at Little’s murderous past, check out the FBI’s multimedia news release from last year.

FBI: Iran Behind Website Inciting Violence Against Officials Who Defended Election Integrity

FBI Director Christopher Wray, via FBI.

By Steve Neavling

The FBI says Iran is responsible for a website that incited violence against the bureau’s Director Chris Wray and other federal and state officials who discredited baseless fraud allegations leveled by President Trump and his allies. 

The website titled “Enemies of the People” listed images, home addresses and other personal information about Wray, ousted Homeland Security official Christopher Krebs, and roughly a dozen other officials, accusing them of engaging in treason because they “aided and abetted the fraudulent election against Trump,” The Washington Post reports.

Their photos were superimposed with crosshairs. 

Iran, which also has been accused of trying to interfere in the 2020 election, denied responsibility. 

The website, which is no longer online, accused governors in swing-states, voting systems executives, Wray and Krebs of “changing votes and working against the President” in a plot to “overthrow our democracy.” The website made the rounds on social media with the hashtags #remembertheirfaces and #NoQuarterForTraitors.

The FBI notified some of the targeted officials with the following statement: “The FBI is in possession of highly credible information indicating Iranian advanced persistent threat actors were almost certainly responsible for the creation of a website, called ‘Enemies of the People’ containing death threats aimed at U.S. election officials in mid-December 2020.”