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Tag: D.C. Police

ATF Headquarters Evacuated After Employee Felt Sick from Package with ‘a Suspicious Liquid Substance’

Photo via ATF.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

ATF’s headquarters in Washington D.C. was evacuated Thursday afternoon after an employee said she felt sick after opening a package containing “a suspicious liquid substance.”

Hazmat crews tested the substance and did not detect anything harmful. The substance was sent to a lab for further analysis, ATF said on Twitter at 4:32 p.m.

“Hazmat is out, substance tested clear, will send to lab for further analysis,” tweeted.

D.C. Police, Fire and EMS also responded to the scene.

There were no updates on the employee early Friday morning.

“More information will be released at the appropriate time,” ATF tweeted.

15 Years Later, Ex-Congressman Gary Condit Decides to Lie About His Relationship With Chandra Levy

screen-shot-2016-10-28-at-12-27-00-am

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Ok, so it’s an election year where both sides in the presidential race have been endlessly accusing one another of lying. Perhaps, having been out of the game for a while,  former Congressman Gary Condit, a blue dog Democrat from California, feels left out and has the itch to lie, too.

I’m referring to his high-profile interview on Dr. Phil this week in which he insisted that he had a platonic relationship with intern Chandra Levy. He says police tried to frame him.

“I saw her one time outside the office, at a restaurant, and she came by my condo once,” Condit said of Levy on Dr. Phil. “Maybe twice. Yeah, I think it was twice she came by. Once again, I want to make this clear: There’s nothing unusual about someone coming by my condo. A lot of people did. People have made some speculation that that means something special … Both times she had a valid reason to come by.”

While at the Washington Post, I was one of the lead reporters who covered the tragic disappearance of Chandra Levy in 2001 and the discovery of her skeletal remains in 2002 in Rock Creek Park in northwest D.C.

Back in 2001, I first reported that Condit, during his first interview with D.C. police, admitted that Levy, who was from his California Congressional district, had slept over his apartment in the Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington. She was a 24-year-old intern with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.

Condit was then asked by police: So you were having an affair, to which he replied: “You figure it out.” At the time, details of the police interview were confirmed by five sources.

As the summer wore on, D.C. police and the FBI insisted that he was not a suspect. But they continued to investigate him, and follow up with interviews. He was certainly a person of interest, though there were some in law enforcement who felt strongly that he did not harm Levy.

Still, things weren’t going so well for Condit. The public was suspicious. (The next year he lost his bid for re-election).

His handlers, including the very aggressive and able Washington lawyer, Abbe Lowell, decided it would be best for him to take to the airwaves and clear things up.  ABC’s Connie Chung was granted the interview, which was a big get at the time.

On Aug. 23, 2001, the interview aired. It was a disaster.

Chandra Levy

Chandra Levy

A source who knew Condit told me that he was supposed begin the interview by reading a statement and admitting that he had an affair with Levy. The thought was that such candidness would give him credibility when he denied having anything to do with her disappearance.

Instead, he decided to forgo the statement and answer Chung’s questions.

It was a public relations nightmare. I watched the interview in the newsroom in near shock. I couldn’t believe he was being so evasive.

Chung asked if he had anything to do with her disappearance.

He responded: “No, I didn’t.”

She eventually got around to asking about the relationship.

CHUNG: Can you describe your relationship? What exactly was your relationship with Chandra Levy?

CONDIT: Well, I met Chandra … last, um, October. And we became very close. I met her in Washington, DC.

CHUNG Very close, meaning …?

CONDIT: We had a close relationship. I liked her very much.

CHUNG: May I ask you, was it a sexual relationship?

CONDIT: Well, Connie, I’ve been married for 34 years, and I’ve not been a … a perfect man, and I’ve made my share of mistakes. But um, out of respect for my family, and out of a specific request from the Levy family, I think it’s best that I not get into those details uh, about Chandra Levy.

If there were a time to plead his case, and deny having the relationship, it would have been then. But Condit knew better. So did the public.

Chung, who knew she had a ratings winner, pressed on. It was the biggest story of the summer.

CHUNG :  What we’re talking about is whether or not you will come forward to uh, lift this veil of suspicion that seems to have clouded you. Can you tell us … did you have a romantic relationship with Chandra Levy?

CONDIT:  Well, once again, I’ve been married 34 years. I have not been a perfect man. I have made mistakes in my life. But out of respect for my family, out of a specific request by the Levy family, it is best that I not get into the details of the relationship.

CHUNG:  Can you tell me this: was Chandra Levy in love with you? Were you in love with her?

CONDIT:  Well, I don’t know that she was in love with me. She never said so. And I was not in love with her.

CHUNG: Did she want to marry you and have your child?

CONDIT:  I only knew Chandra Levy for five months. And in that five months’ period, we never had a discussion about a future, about children, about marriage. Any of those items never came up in that five-month period.

CHUNG:  Did you ever make promises to her?

CONDIT: Never.

CHUNG: Did she want you to leave your wife?

CONDIT:  No. I mean, I’ve been married for 34 years, and I intend to stay married to that woman as long as she’ll have me.

And, oh yes, by the way, if there’s still any doubt,  investigators recovered a pair of  Chandra Levy’s underwear with Condit’s semen.

Condit has now written a book on his experiences titled: “Actual Malice: A True Crime Political Thriller.”

Obviously, he’ll sell more books if he’s viewed as a victim rather than a married Congressman full of b.s. who carried on an affair while his dutiful wife stayed back home in Modesto, Calif.

Eventually, the focus shifted to Ingmar Guandique, an undocumented immigrant from El Salvador,  who ended up being convicted of Levy’s murder in 2010. He was  sentenced to 60 years in prison, but the conviction was tossed and a new trial was ordered. In July, shortly, before the trial was to begin, the U.S. Attorney’s Office  dropped the charges, saying it couldn’t prove the case.

Some people still think Guandique did it. After all, he had previously attacked female joggers in the park before Levy disappeared.

But others are once again asking: Who killed Chandra Levy?

A D.C. Cop Allegedly Made Threats About Michelle Obama

white house file photo

By Clarence Williams and Mary Pat Flaherty
Washington Post

WASHINGTON — A D.C. police officer who worked as a motorcycle escort for White House officials and other dignitaries was moved to administrative duty Wednesday after he allegedly was overheard making threatening comments toward Michelle Obama, according to several police officials.

The police department’s Internal Affairs Division is investigating the alleged comments and notified the U.S. Secret Service on Wednesday, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to give details of the investigation.

The officer allegedly made the comments Wednesday morning as several officers from the Special Operations Division discussed threats against the Obamas. It was not immediately clear where the alleged conversation took place or how many officers took part in the conversation.

To read the full story click here.

 

U.S. Law Enforcement Officials Continue to Trek to Israel to Learn About Terrorism

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

U.S. law enforcement officials continue to trek to Israel to learn a thing or two about dealing with terrorism and homeland security.

The latest group included Assistant D.C. police chief Diane Groomes and U.S. Park Police Deputy Chief Robert MacLean of the U.S. Park Police, the Associated Press reported.

The week-long trip, completed last month, was sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League as part of of an ongoing program to show American authorities how Israel deals with the ongoing threats.

AP reported that D.C. cop Groomes was impressed show the Israeli national police force responds to a disaster and how accepting Israelis are of the security precautions taken in that country.

“I was just struck by how they can handle a scene, process and clear it and plant within it” in hours, Groomes told AP. “If we had a bomb on a bus, it would take us maybe a day or to handle. They said they just want life to go back to normal as soon as possible.”

 

Files Show FBI Investigated Death Threat Against the Late Tim Russert and His Family

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The hard-charging late Tim Russert, who hosted NBC’s “Meet the Press” for more than 16 years, may have been beloved, but apparently not be everybody.

The Hill newspaper reports that FBI files show that someone left a threatening voicemail for Russert at the tv station on March 7, 2001 at about 9:20 p.m. Authorities suspected a 75-year-old World War II veteran in poor health.

“Yeah, Tim Russert, Mr. Clinton’s, uh, polls are down and yours is down. We haven’t forgotten I’ve called you a couple years ago and we still got you on the f—king platter,” the caller said, according to FBI transcript of the message.

“Believe you me, motherf—ker. That goes for your 15- or 16-year-old kid, too. You protect him, you motherf—ker. You’re no good, you’re absolutely no good, and nothing would treat me or do me any better than to put a bullet right between your f—king eyes, you p—k,” said the caller, according to an FBI transcript of the voice mail.

The D.C. police reported that a similar telephone call was made to Russert roughly four months. Authorities believed it may have been the same person, the Hill reported.

In that call,  the person said he “didn’t like the way someone had been treated, possibly ALBERT GORE, and advised he knew where RUSSERT lived and where his son attended school,” according to FBI documents, the Hill reported.

The files showed, according to the Hill, that the FBI’s San Francisco office tracked down a likely suspect — a 75-year-old World War II veteran who was “extremely difficult” to live with. The man suffered from diabetes and arthritis and had suffered a heart attack and a stroke.

The Hill reported that the Justice Department declined to prosecute, but the FBI warned him he’d be prosecuted is he continued his shenannigans.

Weekend Series on History of Crime: The Attempted Assassination of President Reagan 29 Years Ago

D.C. Gun Sting Had its Tense Moments; FBI and ATF Assisted

handgun-photoD.C. police are partially crediting this sting with the record low  homicide rate. The D.C. police worked with the FBI, which wired the store and ATF, which traced the guns.

By Clarence Williams
Washington Post Staff Writer

WASHINGTON — The three young men dressed in black walked into the Northeast auto body shop, talking fast, eager to make a deal: They had guns to sell.

Sgt. Dale Sutherland and Detective Franklyn Then sensed danger as one young man pulled out a silver handgun, unloaded the clip and laid it on the desk. Another kept his hand behind his back, and the third nervously stretched his arms above his head.

Ten officers and federal agents were on alert nearby in case of trouble. But Sutherland and Then were momentarily vulnerable. A phony storefront sting designed by D.C. police to build felony drug and weapons cases seemed on the verge of a robbery attempt. “They just kind of popped up on us,” said Then, who posed as a criminal middleman trying to ship guns to Mexico. “It didn’t feel good.”

For Full Story

Law Enforcement Pleasantly Surprised: No Inauguration Related Arrests

white house photo
white house photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON – My what a difference four years makes.
At the last presidential inauguration in 2005, when President Bush was being sworn in for a second term, about 20 people were arrested. What’s more, D.C. police reported that 10 of its officers were injured after clashing with anti-war demonstrators.
Tuesday was a much different story.
Federal and local law enforcement in Washington said there were no inauguration-related arrests, which surprised many considering the crowd. Estimates were as high as about 2 million.
Paul Bresson, an FBI spokesman, called the no-arrest event “a very good day for law enforcement”. D.C. police and U.S. Secret Service echoed similar sentiments Wednesday afternoon.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday the Secret Service unveiled its much anticipated new armored presidential limousine.
“Although many of the vehicles’ security enhancements cannot be discussed, it is safe to say that this car’s security and coded communications systems make it the most technologically advanced protection vehicle in the world,” Nicholas Trotta, Assistant Director for the Office of Protective Operations, said in a prepared statement before the car was unveiled.