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Tag: Washington D.C

Secret Service Officer Shot Man Who Appeared to Be Holding a Gun. It was a comb

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A man shot by a Secret Service officer near the White House was holding a comb and suffered from mental illness, according to new court documents.

Myron Berryman, 51, who was charged with assaulting a police officer after the Aug. 10 shooting, approached the Secret Service officer and said he had a gun, The Washington Post reports. Court records say Berryman appeared to grab an object from the right side of his body and pointed his clasped arms at the officer.

Berryman was shot in the torso and is now recovering at a psychiatric hospital, his lawyer says.

It wasn’t until after the shooting that the officer realized Berryman had a comb, not a gun.

Just before the shooting, according to a police report, Berryman is accused of shooting at the officer, “I’m going to kill you. I’m going to shoot you.”

Two Top Homeland Security Officials Were Illegally Appointed, Not Qualified to Hold Posts

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The top two acting Homeland Security leaders were not appointed through a valid process and therefore aren’t legally qualified to hold their positions, the Government Accountability Office has determined.

The appointments of Chad Wolf, acting Department of Homeland Security secretary, and Ken Cuccinelli, a senior official performing deputy secretary duties, violated the laws detailing who can fill Senate-confirmed posts, the GAO said. They have been serving in their positions since November.

“Because the incorrect official assumed the title of acting secretary at that time, subsequent amendments to the order of succession made by that official were invalid,” the GAO said Friday, as reported by The New York Times.

Without the ability to enforce its findings, the GAO was referring the case to Homeland Security’s inspector General and Congress.

The White House said it’s not acting on the findings.

“D.H.S. is expressly authorized by Congress in the Homeland Security Act to designate its acting secretaries,” Judd Deere, a White House spokesman, said. “G.A.O. is not. And G.A.O.’s opinion substituting its views for that of the agency’s is not only wrong, but laughable.”

Some Democrats called for the officials to resign and said their policy decisions could be invalidated.

“President Trump’s efforts to install political sycophants to implement his extreme policies in an end run around the law and Senate have finally caught up with him,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. said in a statement. “The determination by an independent congressional watchdog today invalidates actions Mr. Cuccinelli and Mr. Wolf have taken and both should immediately step down from their illegal roles.”

House Democrats Introduce Bill to Remove J. Edgar Hoover’s Name from FBI Headquarters, Calling Him a Bigot

Hoover receives the National Security Medal from President Dwight Eisenhower on May 27, 1955, as then-Vice President Richard Nixon and others look on. (FBI photo)

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Democrats in the U.S. House are trying to remove J. Edgar Hoover’s name from the FBI headquarters building, calling the bureau’s former director a bigot who violated the civil rights of black leaders and political rivals.

Reps. Gerry Connolly, D-VA, Steve Cohen, D-TN, Dina Titus D-NV, and Karen Bass, D-CA, introduced legislation last week to remove any reference to Hoover from the building in Washington D.C.

“It’s long past time to rename the FBI Headquarters. J. Edgar Hoover was a racist, a bigot, and a homophobe,” Rep. Connolly says in a news release. “He abused his power and trampled the civil liberties of Dr. King, anti-war protesters, his political rivals, and too many others. He is no role model for any time, and certainly not this one. Congress must right this wrong and rename this building.”

The National Commission on Renaming the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Headquarters Building ACT of 2020 would create a nine-member commission to recommend a new name that reflects diversity, as well as the values of the FBI and U.S. Constitution. The members would be appointed by the president, the Senate majority and minority leaders, the speaker of the House and the House minority leader.

“As our nation faces a historical reckoning, we have an opportunity to right our wrongs and honor Americans who represent the democratic principles on which our union was founded,” Bass says. “J. Edgar Hoover used COINTELPRO to thwart the efforts of Black activists calling for equality in America. The program was ultimately designed to surveil, defame, and silence civil rights leaders, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcom X. Much worse, Hoover’s own racist views impacted FBI operations and countless racially-motivated hate crimes were left unchecked under his leadership. Identifying a namesake that reflects the true values of the FBI is worth supporting now more than ever.”

A similar bill was introduced in the U.S. House in 2015 but languished.

Cohen says it is past time to remove his name from this place of honor.”

“The civil rights we enjoy today are in spite of J. Edgar Hoover, not because of him,” Cohen says. “Yet, his name adorns one of the most prominent buildings on Pennsylvania Avenue in our nation’s capital and one that houses an agency of government responsible for assuring justice.”

Government Watchdogs Investigating Use of Force by Federal Officers in Portland, Washington D.C.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The inspectors general of the Justice Department and Homeland Security have launched investigations into how federal agents have used force and detained protesters during demonstrations in Portland and Washington D.C.

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is reviewing the use of force by U.S. Marshals in Portland and the FBI, DEA and ATF in Washington D.C., The Washington Post reports.

Homeland Security Inspector General Joseph Cuffari is investigating allegations that CBP agents “improperly detained and transported protesters” in Portland, where protesters and federal officers have clashed over the past week.

In a joint statement, Democratic leaders in the U.S. House said the investigations are “critically important” as the Trump administration plans to deploy federal agents to additional cities, including Detroit, Chicago and Kansas City.

“Many of these federal agents are dressed as soldiers, driving unmarked vehicles and refusing to identify themselves or their agencies,” they wrote. “Nearly everywhere they have deployed, their presence has increased tensions and caused more confrontation between demonstrators and police.”

On Thursday night, a federal judge in Oregon issued a temporary restraining order barring federal agents in Portland from arresting or using force against journalists and legal observers.

Meanwhile, Homeland Security’s first secretary, Republican Tom Ridge, criticized the use of federal officers in cities without the consent of state and local officials.

“It would be a cold day in hell before I would consent or agree to the unsolicited, uninvited intervention in any of my cities,” Ridge told KDKA . “I certainly don’t favor that kind of action, and certainly don’t think DHS was designed for that purpose to start with.”

Stacey Moy Named Special Agent in Charge of Counterintelligence Division of the Washington Field Office

FBI Special Agent Stacey Moy.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Stacey Moy has been named special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence Division of the Washington Field Office.

Moy, who most recently served as a deputy assistant director in the Counterintelligence Division at FBI headquarters, joined the bureau as a special agent in 2004 in the Washington Field Office, where he investigated foreign counterintelligence and espionage cases.

Moy investigated penetrations of the U.S. intelligence community, media leaks, and economic espionage, and also served on the SWAT team.

In 2009, he was promoted to supervisory special agent in the Counterintelligence Division at headquarters, dealing with cases involving the targeting and acquisition of U.S. trade secrets by foreign adversaries.

In 2011, Moy became field supervisor of a counterproliferation squad in the Oakland Resident Agency of the San Francisco Field Office.

In 2014, he served as unit chief of the Counterproliferation Center in the Counterintelligence Division at headquarters. The center is tasked with leading the bureau’s efforts to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and other technologies that endanger national security. In 2015, Moy was promoted to assistant section chief of the center.

In 2016, he moved to the San Francisco Field Office to serve as the assistant special agent in charge of the criminal branch in charge of investigating financial crimes, public corruption, civil rights, and violent crimes against children. In 2017, Moy was named a Counterintelligence Division section chief, and in 2019, was promoted to deputy assistant director.

Moy graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy. He earned a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College and was a senior executive fellow at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government for Executive Education.

ICE, CBP Deploys Troops And Resources to Assist Law Enforcement Amid Protests

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

ICE and CBP have deployed troops and resources to assist local, state and federal law enforcement quell violence at protests across the nation.

“These ‘protests’ have devolved into chaos & acts of domestic terrorism by groups of radicals & agitators,” CBP Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan tweeted. “@CBP is answering the call and will work to keep DC safe.”

Morgan also said CBP was helping protect national monuments and memorial in Washington D.C.

“Last night, some of them were defaced by rioters,” Morgan tweeted on Monday. “We’re working hard to prevent it from happening again, and we’re proud to protect them.”

The deployment comes after Trump announced that he was dispatching the military across Washington D.C.

Trump also said he may send U.S. troops to U.S. cities where governors are not deploying their state National Guards to “dominate” their streets.

Democratic lawmakers called Trump’s threats an affront to free speech rights.

“This next week will be critical,” U.S. Rep Elissa Slotkin, D-Mich., said in a news release Monday. We are at a crossroads. I hope our veterans speak out and stand up for the core values they believe in. This is a dangerous path for our institutions, our military –– and our nation.”

Trump to Nominate Tim Shea as New Acting Administrator of DEA

Tim Shea

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Tim Shea, the top federal prosecutor in Washington D.C. and a former senior adviser to Attorney General William Barr, will soon be tapped to become the DEA administrator, ABC News reports, citing an administration official.

President Trump plans to replace him with Justin Herdman, the U.S. attorney in Cleveland.

Shea oversaw the Justice Department’s move to drop charges against Michael Flynn, the president’s former national security adviser. He also played a significant role in reversing the sentencing recommendation for Roger Stone, a longtime Trump ally.

Shea will replace Uttam Dhillon, who was serving as acting DEA administrator. Dhillon will be transferred to a senior leadership position in the Justice Department.

Secret Service Racks Up $33,000 Protecting Mnuchin at Trump’s Washington D.C. Hotel

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Secret Service racked up a $33,000 bill at President Trump’s hotel in Washington D.C. while guarding Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin for 137 nights.

The Secret Service was charged $242 a night at the Trump International Hotel, the maximum amount allowed for federal agencies to spend on lodging, The Washington Post reports.

Mnuchin was staying in a luxury suite for several months before moving to a house. The Secret Service stayed in a room next to Mnuchin’s to screen his visitors and packages at taxpayers’ expense.

This is one of dozens of instances in which the Secret Service spent money at Trump’s businesses.

A Treasury Department spokesman said Mnuchin “was not aware of what the U.S. Secret Service paid for the adjoining room.”