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Tag: domestic violence

FBI Obtained Photos of Alleged Abuse by Rob Porter More Than a Year Ago

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

The FBI obtained photos of alleged abuse at the hands of former White House aide Rob Porter just a week after President Trump’s inauguration in January 2017.

The revelations, first reported by CNN, raise more questions about when the White House learned of allegations that Porter abused his two ex-wives. 

The Trump administration has maintained that it was unaware of the allegations until recently, but the FBI has contradicted those claims, saying it provided the White House with reports on Porter in March, July, November and January.

The photos obtained by the FBI show Porter’s ex-wife Colbie Holderness with a black eye she said Porter gave her in 2005.

The allegations, also supported by a police report, prevented Porter from getting a security clearance.

National security expert Mark Zaid said it “isn’t reasonable” that the White House first learned of the abuse allegations in news reports last week, when Porter resigned.

“I would be surprised that if in their partial report in March, the FBI either didn’t include the photo or, at a minimum, reference they had photographic evidence of the domestic assault,” he said.

House Committee Launches Investigation into White House’s Handling of Rob Porter Allegations

U.S. Capitol

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

The Republican-led House Oversight Committee has launched an investigation into the White House’s handling of domestic violence allegations against former high-ranking official Rob Porter.

The committee made the decision Tuesday evening, just hours after FBI Director Christopher Wray, testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee, contradicted the White House’s version of events, The Hill reports

The committee wants to know how Porter maintained his job and continued to work without security clearance after the allegations surfaced. 

White House officials originally suggested they didn’t know about the allegations until shortly before Porter resigned, claiming the FBI had not finished its background report on him.

But Wray testified that the bureau finished the background report in July and closed the file in January, which means the White House would have known about the allegations weeks before he resigned. 

Porter did not resign until photos surfaced last week showing an ex-wife with a black eye.

President Trump, who defended Porter, declined to answer questions from reporters today about the Porter case. 

Latinos Less Likely to Report Domestic Violence Because of Fears of Deportation

ICE agents, via ICE.

ICE agents, via ICE.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal immigration appears to have made victims of domestic violence less likely to report the incidents because of fears of deportation.

Reports of domestic violence fell by as much as 18% in California’s Latino community in the first six months of 2017, according to data compiled by the Los Angeles Times

The reports fell 18% in San Francisco, 13.3% in San Diego and 3.5% in Los Angeles.

By comparison, the drops in domestic violence reporting among non-Latinos dropped less than 1%, “prompting fears among professionals working in the domestic violence field that the declines are linked to a fear of deportation,” the LA Times reported.

One U.S. official said the fears are grounded more in perception than reality.

“ICE still has a policy that we don’t pursue removal proceedings against victims or witnesses of crime, and I haven’t seen any documented instances where that actually happened,” Claude Arnold, who oversaw ICE in Los Angeles between 2010 and 2015, told the Times. “To a great degree, we facilitate those people having legal status in the U.S.”

Other Stories of Interest

Border Patrol Agent Found Dead After Shooting at Officers in Arizona

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent was killed Monday night after an exchange of gunfire with police, who were responding to a domestic violence incident at his home in Maricopa, Ariz.

The couple’s 10-year-old daughter called 911 to report the domestic disturbance, according to 12News. 

The agent was identified as Jeremy Russo, 40.

Russo is accused of shooting at police as they arrived to his home.

One officer shot at Russo, and the rest of the family was able to safely flee the home.

SWAT officers sent a robot inside the home, where Russo was found dead in a closet.

“Before we went to bed, we heard shooting,” said Bonnie Kevicki, who lives around the corner from the scene. “I thought it was a gas explosion when the smash and boom went on about 12:30.”

Russo, who joined the agency in 2011, was assigned to the Casa Grande Border Patrol Station.

Police said it’s unclear whether Russo died from the officer’s fire or from a self-inflicted gunshot.

Two Female Senators Urge FBI to Collect More Data on Domestic Violence, Stalking Crimes

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Two female senators are calling for the FBI to collect more information on domestic violence and stalking crimes.

“The seriousness and devastating effects of these crimes, as well as the propensity for repeat victimization, expose a dangerous gap in the FBI’s crime data collection programs,” Sens.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) wrote in a letter sent Monday to FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Loretta Lynch, The Hill reports. 

The senators wrote that the FBI collects data on crimes ranging “from homicide to loitering … but no data are collected on stalking and very limited data are collected on domestic violence.”

The senators said a quarter of women are victims of domestic violence, and one in six women are victims of stalking.

“The FBI is already authorized by law to collect data on new crimes without congressional approval, and it has already done so multiple times,” the senators wrote.

“For example, in January 2016, the FBI began collecting crime data on animal cruelty, with the justification that animal cruelty is an early indicator of violent crime,” they added.

NFL Takes Risks by Hiring Former FBI Director Mueller to Investigate Ray Rice Controversy

Director Mueller testifying on the Hill/fbi file photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Hiring former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to investigate the NFL’s handling of running back Ray Rice has its dangers, the New York Times reports.

The NFL, which said Mueller would be given “the full cooperation of N.F.L. personnel and access to all N.F.L. records,” chose one of the best investigators to look into the matter.

“His reputation is really on the line,” said John M. Dowd, who was hired by Major League Baseball to investigate several matters. “If it comes out too light, it won’t look good. At the end of the day, what’s most important to him is his reputation, which means more to him than money. I can’t believe he’ll want to pull his punches.”

To avoid a conflict, Mueller will report to John Mara, the owner of the New York Giants, and Art Rooney II of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who are lawyers.

“Our role is not to conduct or direct the investigation but to support Mr. Mueller and assist him in gaining whatever access or resources he needs,” Mara and Rooney said in a statement. “Our sole motive here is to get the truth and then share Mr. Mueller’s findings with the public.”

Mueller’s investigation has the power to damage the league because the probe is examining the behavior of those at NFL headquarters.

“He will have a lot of power to remind people about these promises,” Bromwich said. “These investigations can be a little tricky, but in many ways they are even more difficult if they take place behind a curtain rather than in the public eye.”

 

NFL Commissioners Urges Former FBI Director Mueller to Investigate Ray Rice Incident

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has asked former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III to lead an investigation into the league’s “pursuit and handling of evidence in the Ray Rice domestic violence incident,” the New York Times reports.

The news comes just two days after graphic video surfaced, showing the running back knocking his fiancee unconscious.

The investigation will be overseen by John Mara, the co-owner of the Giants, and Art Rooney II of the Steelers, both of whom are lawyers.

Goodell said he plans to give Mueller full access to NFL records.

On Wednesday, the Associated Press reported that the video had been seen by NFL executives long before this week.

 

Boston Marathon Bombing Suspect’s Sister Accused of Threatening to Bomb NYC Woman

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The sister of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was arrested Monday after police say she threatened to bomb a New York City woman, Fox News reports.

Ailina Tsarnaeva is accused of making the threat via telephone Monday. She been charged with aggravated harassment and is due in court Sept. 30.

Tsarnaeva couldn’t be reached for comment.

Her brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, pleaded no guilty to killing three people in the April 2013 marathon explosions.