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Tag: shootings

FBI Helps Portland Police Investigate ‘Ridiculous’ Number of Shootings

Kieran Ramsey, special agent in charge of the FBI in Oregon.

By Steve Neavling

The FBI is assisting Portland police investigate what it called a “ridiculous” amount of shootings. 

The help is part of a partnership established last year called, Safe Streets Task Force, KOIN-TV reports.

At a news conference Tuesday, Kieran Ramsey, special agent in charge of the FBI in Oregon, said many of the shootings are connected to gang violence and the homeless population. 

Ramsey said the FBI will begin investigating the “worst of the worst” criminals who are using guns almost “indiscriminately.” 

The bureau is also offering rewards for seven shootings. 

Ramsey acknowledged in an interview with KOIN-TV that it won’t be easy. 

“Things like we saw over the weekend. A huge number of shootings. Mass shootings. Where, multiple injuries, multiple homicides. That bothers me all the time. I think, again, the fact that if we continue to see this pace, this year will break last year’s records,” Ramsey said.

Wray Op-Ed Focuses on Law Enforcement Officers Killed in Line of Duty in 2021

FBI Director Christopher Wray

By Steve Neavling

One law enforcement officer was killed every five days on average last year, the highest number since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

In an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, FBI Director Christopher Wray wrote that the death toll “hasn’t received the attention it deserves.” A total of 73 law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty in 2021.

Among those who died in the line of duty were FBI Special Agents Laura Schwartzenberger and Daniel Alfin, who were killed while serving a search warrant at a home in Florida early last year.

FBI Task Force Officer Greg Ferency of the Terre Haute, Ind., Police Department also was killed in an ambush outside an FBI office in July.

Wray wrote:

“When I started as FBI director, I made it my practice to call the chief or sheriff of every officer intentionally killed in the line of duty. I have now made more than 200 such calls. Each conversation reminds me that behind the uniform, the badge, and, yes, sometimes the flashing lights in your rearview mirror, there are real people. With each call, I think about the families and friends who lost someone they loved, the children who will grow up without a parent, and the communities deprived of a public servant.  

“We owe it to them to redouble our efforts to take the most violent offenders off the streets and to make sure officers have the resources, equipment and training they need to do their jobs safely. Even more, we need to ensure the brave men and women know that the communities they serve have their backs. 

“Every day, officers willingly put themselves at risk not knowing what dangerous situation or traumatic event they might encounter. I won’t pretend every person who carries a badge is beyond reproach, but the overwhelming majority do the job with the professionalism and commitment to equal justice citizens rightly expect. ” 

To read the entire op-ed, click here.

California Man Charged After FBI Found Threats of a Mass Shooting at Synagogue

Ross Farca

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A San Francisco Bay Area man has been charged after the FBI discovered online threats of a mass shooting at a synagogue.

Ross Farca, 23, of Concord pleaded not guilty to making criminal threats, possession of an illegal assault rifle and manufacturing an assault rifle, The Associated Press reports.

A search warrant uncovered an illegal AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, a high-capacity magazine, Nazi literature and camouflage clothes.

Authorities said he built a complete weapon after legally buying an AR-15 rifle frame.

Farca’s online threats included shooting law enforcement.

The inspiration for a future attack came from the Christchurch mosque shootings in New Zealand and the Poway synagogue shooting in San Diego, authorities said.

“I would probably get a body count of like 30 (Jews) and then like five police officers because I would also decide to fight to the death,” court records say Farca wrote in one online post.

FBI Says Cop Killings Are ‘the New Norm,’ Inspired by Black Lives Matter

police lightsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An internal FBI investigation concluded that the media, Black Lives Matter and politicians are to blame for the spike on attacks on police.

“Law enforcement officials believe that defiance and hostility displayed by assailants toward law enforcement appears to be the new norm,” said the internal report stamped “For Official Use Only,” The Washington Examiner reports.

On Tuesday, two Chicago cops were injured in “targeted” shootings.

The four-page report traces the spike in shootings of police back to Ferguson, where the death of Michael Brown sparked protests nationwide.

In at least a quarter of the 53 shootings that killed 60 police in 2016, the FBI found that the gunmen were targeting police to kill them. 

LA Times: Border Patrol Must Continue Accountability, Use of Force Improvements

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

By Editorial Board
Los Angeles Times

Over the past three years, the Obama administration has struggled to change a culture of violence and impunity within the U.S. Border Patrol — a culture that has tolerated excessive force against suspected border crossers, including unnecessary lethal shootings. To its credit, the government has forced some improvements in both transparency and accountability, as well as reductions in the use of force, under Customs and Border Protection Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske, though the agency continues to face dogged problems with bribery and other underhanded actions by some of the agents.

Whether the Border Patrol will continue to improve under the Trump administration is an open question. Kerlikowske is retiring and President-elect Donald Trump has not yet nominated a successor. Mark Morgan took over as chief of the Border Patrol, answering to Kerlikowske, in October, the first outsider to be put in charge of the agency. A former assistant director of the FBI and military veteran, Morgan was brought in to the Border Patrol two years ago to revamp its troubled internal affairs department. His appointment as chief signals the seriousness with which the Obama administration is trying to force changes by challenging the institutional culture.

But Morgan will now be working for Trump, whose harsh anti-immigrant rhetoric during the campaign is well known and who has vowed to take dramatic steps (such as building an enormous wall along the Mexican border) to keep immigrants from entering the country without authorization. Despite getting little support from organized labor generally, Trump received a rare early endorsement in the primaries from the union representing border patrol agents, which has been critical of the Obama administration’s reform efforts and has accused it of seeking to “demoralize Border Patrol agents” and to “dismantle immigration enforcement.” In accepting the union’s endorsement, Trump didn’t emphasize the reforms that need to be made, but merely vowed to provide the agency with “the resources, tools and support they need to protect the United States and stop the influx of drugs, gangs and cartel violence.” Given that, there is reason to fear backsliding.

To read more click here. 

FBI Prepared to Help Chicago Combat Surge in Murders

police tapeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is prepared to help Chicago deal with the outbreak of violence in 2016, and President-elect Donald Trump said he’s prepared to listen.

Sources told Fox News that the FBI wants to help the Windy City after 3,550 people were shot and 762 murdered in 2016. 

Sean Spicer, spokesman for the Trump transition team, said the president-elect is worried about the gun violence.

“Obviously I think the President-elect would be willing to listen to anything that can be done to make sure that Americans are kept safe and if the FBI has ideas about how to do that – he would definitely be all ears to do that,” Spicer said.

In a Tweet on Monday, Trump suggested he may bring in federal help if Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel can’t solve the problem on his own.

“Chicago murder rate is record setting – 4,331 shooting victims with 762 murders in 2016. If Mayor can’t do it he must ask for Federal help!” Trump tweeted.

Still, Chicago is not expected to have the highest murder rate in the country. Preliminary records show Detroit and Baltimore had more shootings and murders per capita.

Border Patrol Agents Cleared of Wrongdoing After 4 Shootings

Border PatrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol officials have concluded that agents acted properly while opening fire while on duty on four different occasions, The Los Angeles Times reports. 

An internal panel for Customs and Border Protection reviewed the cases after concerns about a pattern of agents using deadline force.

CBP also is investigating 14 other shootings.

In one of the cases where agents were found to have acted properly, they repeatedly fired at the engine of a boat smuggling immigrants near Solana Beach in San Diego County in June 2015.

After the shooting, the boat crashed with the agent’s boat and capsized. One woman drowned.

Two other cases involve agents opening fire on people throwing rocks at them.

In the fourth shooting, an agent shot a suspect who was clutching a rifle and fleeing local police.

Other Stories of Interest

The Hill: How Body Cameras on Border Patrol Agents Could Save Lives

Border Patrol agents reads the Miranda rights to a Mexican national arrested for transporting drugs.By Pedro Rios
The Hill

In 2010, Anastasio Hernandez Rojas, a husband and father of five, was handcuffed, tortured and brutally beaten to death by 12 Border Patrol agents at the San Ysidro border crossing in California. The horrifying incident witnessed by dozens of people exposed a systemic problem with the nation’s largest law enforcement agency: that Border Patrol agents operate with impunity, without meaningful accountability, and in complete opaqueness.

The abuses by agents are widespread and well documented. Since January of 2010 more than46 people have died as a result of an interaction with the Border Patrol. This past June, a woman was killed when Border Patrol agents intentionally rammed their boat into another boat carrying 20 people. In 2012, a Border Patrol agent shot 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez repeatedly in the back before he died. He was on his way to a local market to buy food staples in the Mexican city of Nogales, along the border with Arizona.

In the Hernandez Rojas case, a civilian bystander recorded the incident from the safety of an elevated pedestrian walkway. The video shows 12 Border Patrol agents, who are armed with batons and a Taser, brutally beating and tasing Rojas — who was lying on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back. The medical examiner ruled the death a homicide. Six years later, not one of the 12 agents has been charged or even fired.

Hernandez Rojas’s widow, Maria Puga, is leading the movement for expanded oversight and accountability, including the demand that Border Patrol agents wear body cameras, which are a proven deterrent of abuse. A study shows that when officers wear them, the use of force plummets over 50 percent. Both civilians and officers experience fewer injuries when officers wear body cameras.