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Archive for November 27th, 2013

U.S. Calls for Release of Former FBI Agent Held Since March 2007 in Iran

Robert Levinson/photo helpboblevinson.com

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

It seems like a long shot.

The U.S. is calling for the release of former FBI agent Robert Levinson, who Monday became the longest-held American hostage ever, the Associated Press reports.

Levinson has been missing since a business trip to Iran’s Kish Island in March 2007.

“It is our view that all of these Americans should have the opportunity to come home,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters. “The U.S. government has made a respectful request of the Iranian regime during this holiday season to consider on humanitarian grounds releasing these three Americans, or at least releasing the two Americans we know are detained and locating the whereabouts of the third, Mr. Levinson.”

Levinson’s release became a topic as the U.S. began negotiating with Iran over its nuclear program.

His release sure would make the holidays brighter for his family.

Anti-Defamation League: FBI Hate Crime Statistics Have Serious Flaws

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI issues statistics every year for hate crimes in the U.S.

This year, hate crimes fell 7%. Good news, right?

Not exactly, according to the Anti-Defamation League, the Jerusalem Post reports.

The annual statistics come from law enforcement agencies that voluntarily release the information. About a quarter of the nation’s law enforcement agencies don’t even particate.

“Especially disappointing is the fact that the report contains no data from jurisdictions that had been models for national response in the past,” ADL National chairman Abraham Foxman said. “The Justice Department and the FBI should use every resource at their disposal to push harder to obtain this missing data, urging those cities and states that still have not provided their 2012 hate crime data to do so as quickly as possible.”

Democratic Lawmakers Call for More Study to Determine Fallout of ‘Stand Your Ground’ Laws

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Congresswoman is calling for the Justice Department to study the racial impact of “Stand Your Ground” laws, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.

Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Cleveland, and a group of Democratic lawmakers sent a letter Tuesday to AG Eric Holder to plead for more documentation and study of the laws that permit people to use deadly force before retreating. More than two dozens states have laws similar to “Stand Your Ground.”

The letter states that “Stand Your Ground” laws “are contributing to increases in homicides and firearm injuries and are exacerbating racial disparities in the criminal justice system.”

Congressional Members Want Answers from CBP About Use-of-Force Policies

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

CBP’s decision not to implement key reforms within the department has prompted calls from members of Congress for more explanation, the Arizona Star reports.

Twenty two members of Congress wrote a letter to CBP acting Commissioner Thomas Winkowski. “The Border Patrol has not been as forthcoming as possible about how it uses force in the name of public safety, and that needs to change,” Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Arizona, said in a news release.

“If the American people don’t believe the Border Patrol will answer honest questions about its conduct, the mission will suffer,” he added.

One of the reforms that wasn’t implemented was the restriction of deadly force when agents are attacked by rocks.

At least 19 people have died in CBP-related deaths since 2010, according to the Arizona Star.

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