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Tag: agent

Vermont Man Accused of Spraying Liquid Manure on Marked Border Patrol Car

Border Patrol car covered in liquid manure. Photo via CBP.

Border Patrol car covered in liquid manure. Photo via CBP.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Vermont man accused of spraying liquid manure on a marked Border Patrol car pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges of disorderly conduct and simple assault of a law enforcement officer with fluids.

Authorities said Mark Johnson, 53, covered the vehicle in manure after telling an agent that he should do more to arrest people in the country illegally, the Associated Press reports.

The agent said Johnson sprayed the car after shouting profanities on Aug. 3 in Alburgh, a community just out of the Canadian border on a peninsula in Lake Champlain.

FBI Veteran Leaves Special Counsel Mueller’s Investigation of Russia

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who is now special counsel for the Russia investigation.

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who is now special counsel for the Russia investigation.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election has lost one of its top FBI investigators.

Sources told ABC News that FBI veteran Peter Strzok stepped down for unknown reasons, marking the first known hitch in the investigation. 

Strzok, who is a counterintelligence expert, is now working for the FBI’s human resources division.

ABC wrote:

He is no stranger to complex and controversial investigations.

As chief of the FBI’s counterespionage section last year, he helped oversee the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, and he took part in the FBI interview of the Democratic presidential candidate.

Within weeks of the Clinton probe ending, Strzok found his office facing a new challenge: investigating Russia’s alleged efforts to influence last year’s presidential election, including a cyberattack on the Democratic National Committee.

A spokesman for the special counsel’s office declined to comment.

Video: Off-Duty Border Patrol Agent Saves Child from Churning River

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Border Patrol agent rescued a girl trapped by churning water in a river in Texas.

Agent Adan Sanchez junked into the top of a dam on the Comal River in New Braunfels and save the stranger, News 4 San Antonio reports. 

“She could have drowned. She was going under. I think her feet were sideways, and she was just rolling and rolling,” Sanchez said.

The agent clutched onto the girl and rescued her from the strong current.

“Kind of hoping somebody would have done it if my child was drowning as well. So, I don’t know. I just reacted. I just did it. I don’t know why. I just did it,” he said.

Other Stories of Interest

Updated: FBI Agent Indicted for Allegedly Lying about Oregon Refuge Standoff

Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was the spokesman of the occupation. Via YouTube.

Robert “LaVoy” Finicum was the spokesman of the occupation. Via YouTube.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Update: 10:15 a.m. Thursday —  FBI agent W. Joseph Astarita, a member of the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team (HRT) based in Quantico, Va., was arraigned Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Portland on three counts of making false statements and two counts of obstruction of justice.

Astarita was one of a number of FBI agents assigned to the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. He was present during the shooting of Robert LaVoy Finicum on Jan. 26, 2016, in Harney County, Oregon.

Finicum was stopped by a roadblock, where he allegedly challenged officers to shoot him. He was shot and killed by state troopers while moving his hands toward his pocket, where he had a loaded weapon.

The indictment alleges, according to a Justice Department press release, that Astarita knowingly and willfully made false statements to FBI supervisory special agents, knowing that the statements were false and material to the FBI’s decision not to investigate the propriety of an agent-involved shooting.

Specifically, Astarita falsely stated he had not fired his weapon during the attempted arrest of Mr. Finicum when he knew he had in fact fired his weapon. Astarita also knowingly engaged in misleading conduct toward Oregon State Police officers by failing to disclose that he had fired two rounds during the attempted arrest. Neither round hit Finicum.

___________________________

Posted on Wednesday.

An FBI agent accused of lying about shooting at a rancher during the armed occupation of a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon has been indicted.

Sources familiar with the case told the Oregonian that prosecutors allege the agent made a false statement with intent to obstruct justice.   

The agent, who has not yet been identified, was the subject of a yearlong investigation by the Justice Department inspector general. He will be identified in federal court on Wednesday.

As local, county and federal authorities moved in on the occupiers, the Deschutes County sheriff said an FBI agent shot twice at the spokesman of the occupiers, Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, a 54-year-old Arizona ranger. 

The bullets missed, but in the chaos that ensued, state police troopers fatally shot Finicum as he reached in his pocket, where he had a loaded handgun.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether the FBI agent is on leave or has been fired.

Owner of Gigantic Lobster Angry That TSA Photographed ‘Dinnah’

Giant lobster posted on the TSA's Twitter account.

Giant lobster posted on the TSA’s Twitter account.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Georgia man is irate after discovering that his 20-pound lobster was photographed by TSA agents and went viral on the agency’s Twitter account.

“They are dumb,” Christopher Stracuzza told the New York Times of the TSA. “They are like the dumbest people in the world.” 

While on a trip to a market in Connecticut, Stracuzza bought 12 standard lobsters and the gigantic one.

The 32-year-old auto-body repairman spent $700 on the lobsters, which he planned for a cookout at his home in Savannah, Ga.

Stracuzza checked a cooler with the lobsters with his luggage at a Boston airport. When he arrived home, he noticed the cooler had been tampered with.

Then a friend told him his giant lobster was posted by a TSA agent and another official on the agency’s official Twitter account.

“We share images through social media to provide helpful travel tips and to better inform the traveling public about T.S.A.’s mission,” an agency spokesperson told the New York Times.

Other Stories of Interest

Off-Duty Border Patrol Agent Kidnapped, Beaten After Protecting Family

Fernando Puga

Fernando Puga

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Border Patrol agent was kidnapped and brutally beaten by two strangers in Northeast El Paso after he tried to keep them away from his family.

Agent Lorenzo Hernandez, who is assigned to the agency’s Deming area, was helping his mother at her food truck when two suspicious men, one of whom had gun, asked Hernandez for a ride on June 9, saying their car had broken down, according to FBI affidavits obtained by the El Paso Times. 

Concerned the men, later identified as Sergio Ivan Quiñonez-Venegas and Fernando A. Puga, would harm his mother and minor brother and nephew, Hernandez offered the strangers a ride in his 2014 Ford Focus.

“When one of the subjects paid for some tamales purchased from BP Agent Hernandez’s mother, Hernandez noticed a large amount of cash in the subject’s wallet,” according to the affidavit by FBI Special Agent Jesus Nieto of El Paso. “BP Agent Hernandez also observed that one of the subjects had a handgun in the waistband of his pants. BP Agent Hernandez stated that he felt compelled to give the subjects a ride to a nearby gas station because he had become concerned for the safety of his mother and his minor brother and nephew who were present at the food truck.”

One of the suspects stuck a gun into Hernandez’s ribs and said, “This is a kidnapping.”

During a 50-mile drive to an area outside of Las Cruces, the suspects threatened to kill him. When the car stopped, Hernandez confronted the men outside of his car.

“Although BP Agent Hernandez reported he was able to gain control of the handgun in a struggle, it was of poor quality and he was unable to fire it at the subjects,” according to the affidavit. “As a result, BP Agent Hernandez threw the handgun away into the field/desert area adjacent to the dirt road. During a physical struggle and foot chase, BP Agent Hernandez was assaulted and struck/stabbed multiple times with a machete by Puga.”

Hernandez was taken to the hospital with fractures to his skull and arms and severe stab wounds to his body and fingers.

Quiñonez-Venegas was arrested June 13 and told FBI agents that he was forced to participate in the kidnapping by Puga. Two days later, the FBI and a local sheriff’s office arrested Puga, who claimed he was kidnapped by Quiñonez-Venegas.

Both men face federal kidnapping charges.

Convicted Smuggler Accused of Sending Border Patrol Agent to Hospital with Bites

File photo of a Border Patrol vehicle, via Wikipedia.

File photo of a Border Patrol vehicle, via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A convicted human smuggler with prior deportations is accused of biting a Border Patrol agent three times, sending him to the hospital.

KRGV reports that the agent tried to arrest Mexican national Jesus Roman Alonzo-Barela and several other people who crossed into the U.S. illegally at a cemetery in Weslaco, Texas, last week.

Authorities said Alonzo-Barela bit the agent three times, requiring the agent to be hospitalized.

Alonzo has been charged with assault on a federal agent.

The identity of the agent has not been released.

Family of 15-Year-Old Fatally Shot by Off-Duty Agent Rejects Official Narrative

Darius Smith, 15, was fatally shot by an off-duty ICE agent. Photo via Twitter.

Darius Smith, 15, was fatally shot by an off-duty ICE agent. Photo via Twitter.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The family of a 15-year-old who was fatally shot by an off-duty ICE agent Friday night in Arcadia, Calif., claims the official narrative is false.

The agent said Darius Smith and two 14-year-old pointed a gun at him and demanded his money after they exited a train Friday night, TheRoot.com reports. In an act of self-defense, he said he shot the teens.

Smith died at a hospital, and the two 14-year-olds were not in life-threatening condition as of today. 

The teens face robbery charges.

Smith’s mother, Reshawna Myricks, is disputing the agent’s story, saying the teens would never try to rob someone.

“Them boys didn’t do that,” Myricks told KCAL9. “They aren’t those type of boys to do that.”

“[They’re] going to walk home; they’re going to see their kids tonight,” Myricks said of the border agent and law-enforcement officers claiming that her son committed a crime. “I got to go back and tell my other three that one of them ain’t coming back no more.

“First they said there was no crime committed,” Myricks continued. “Now there is a crime committed. Now it’s a gun; then they said there was a fight. I don’t know what to believe. All I know is my baby [is] gone and I’ll never know his story.”