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Tag: international association of chiefs of police

FBI Director Wray’s Low-Key Approach May Be What the Doctor Ordered

FBI Director Christopher Wray on Sunday in Orlando. (ticklethewire.com photo)

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

ORLANDO —  FBI Director Christopher Wray delivered a serviceable, but unimpressive speech to thousands of members of the federal, state and local law enforcement community on Sunday at the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

He talked about terrorism, the need for the FBI to work closer with local law enforcement, active shooters, officer deaths and the difficulties, but great rewards of working in the field.

Then, after 35 minutes, he was done and walked off stage to an obligatory round of applause. No questions. No schmoozing. No truly inspiring words. It wasn’t a very meaty speech.

Wray is a nice guy. Low key. Serious about the job. But he’s no rock star like his predecessor James Comey, or for that matter, Robert Mueller, a stoic man who looked and acted like an FBI director plucked out of central casting.

But in these challenging times for the bureau, he may be just what the agency needs. He’s flying under the radar in Washington and he’s not a regular fixture on the nightly news. Being a federal law enforcement official,  and flying too high inside the Beltway can lead to a public beheading from the president.

President Donald Trump has been on a jihad to discredit the bureau and the Justice Department as Mueller moves forward like a heat missile in the Russia probe, flipping one Trump insider after another.    

Not since the Nixonian years, has a president displayed such naked hostility toward the bureau.

The bureau has caught hell from Trump for not indicting Hillary Clinton and for investigating Russia ties to his campaign. To top that off, the FBI was put in an untenable situation when it was asked to do a background check on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, but was then handcuffed and prevented from doing a first-rate job. Critics called the investigation a sham. And to some degree, considering agents weren’t allowed to do a full-court press, it was.

Federal agents are divided. Some think Trump is doing a good job. Some think he’s doing a good job, but think he’s a jerk. And some are simply appalled by his behavior and actions, including his free-flowing tweets. Comey never liked Trump, even before the firing.

Wray’s low key approach may not be publicly inspiring, but it may be just what Washington needs at a time like this.

And with all that’s going on, from the Russia probe, to the Trump attacks to the Brett Kavanaugh mess,  it may explain why he kept his head low on Sunday and walked away without allowing questions.

 

President Obama Addresses The International Association of Chiefs of Police in Chicago

Attorney General Eric Holder Tells Thousands of Cops That Many Departments Need to Address Community Tension and Trust

Attorney General Eric Holder in Orlando

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

ORLANDO, Fla. — Eric Holder delivered his last speech as Attorney General on Monday before the annual International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Orlando. He’s stepping down from the job.

During his speech before thousands of law enforcement folks, Holder mentioned Ferguson, Mo., and the need for police to address the issues of tension and mistrust between the community and the police departments.

“As our nation’s Attorney General, I have always been proud – and steadfast – in my support for law enforcement personnel and their families, who make tremendous and often unheralded sacrifices every single day to keep us safe.

“These sacrifices are too often overlooked. And I believe we do ourselves, our communities, and our nation a grave disservice if we ignore these difficulties – just as we do ourselves a disservice if we dismiss, or fail to address, the conditions and lingering tensions that exist just beneath the surface in so many places across the country – and that were brought to the surface, and raised to the urgent attention of this group and others, by this summer’s events in Ferguson, Missouri. ”

“As law enforcement leaders, it is incumbent upon each of us to take constructive, inclusive steps to rebuild trust and instill respect for the rule of law in all of the communities where these tensions are uncovered.”

Holder was touching on a sensitive subject. While cops understand the tensions in the community, they often feel misunderstood, and  that the challenges they face in policing are glossed over when it comes to addressing such issues.

Holder, who didn’t deliver the speech with a lot of passion, is also seen as a surrogate for President Obama. And frankly, a fair amount of folks in law enforcement aren’t in love with the president.  I had a former federal agent tell me that the following day.

In fact, a video message from President Obama was played Monday before thousands of law enforcement officers. Obama said he was grateful for the jobs they do and the sacrifices they make.

When the video ended, there was polite applause, but it was clear the clapping was not done with a lot of love.

It’s an important issue Holder talked about. And addressing that issue can help the community and police departments.

Hopefully, some of the cops can appreciate the message and not worry about who delivered it.

 

FBI Director James Comey Warns of The Prospect of a Terrorist Diaspora out Of Syria or Iraq Haunting U.S.

Director James B. Comey speaking in Orlando.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

ORLANDO, Fla. — FBI Director James B. Comey delivered the key note address Monday at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Orlando, warning of  the potential dangers of the  “travelers” from around the world who are joining ISIS in battle. He also raised concerns domestically about the challenges of getting information from devices like smartphones for investigations, despite court-authorization.

“We as a country, with our allies around the world, have done a great job over the last 13 years of taking the fight to core al Qaeda in the Afghanistan, Pakistan region,” Comey told thousands of local, state, federal and foreign law enforcement agents and officers and chiefs gathered in a cavernous auditorium at the Orange County Convention Center.

“In the course of that we have shrunk that tumor. I think of terrorism as a cancer. We have shrunk that tumor significantly. At the same time, the lightly governed or ungoverned spaces that have popped in a lot of different parts of the world, especially in wake of the Arab Spring,  in Northern Africa, around the Gulf and around the Mediterranean, have allowed a metastasis of that tumor. So we’ve seen popping virulent strains that are the progeny of al Qaeda…And most recently the Islamic state, or ISIL.”

“What’s happened is that those lightly governed spaces have allowed these secondary tumors to root and to offer safe havens and to attract to those…people from around the world, seeking meaning in their lives in some incredibly misguided way, looking to wage jihad.”

He said the travelers who come from the U.S. and around the world to fight in Syria and Iraq pose a great danger.

“Them going there is very worrisome. Because they get the worst kind of relationships, they get the worst kind of training. It’s actually their coming out at some point that worries me even more. There will come a terrorist diaspora out of places like like Syria and Iraq. Those of us who are old enough to remember can remember the terrorist diaspora out of Afghanistan after the war with the Soviets. And we can draw a line from that diaspora to 9/11.”

“All of us in this business are determined, I know to ensure that a future diaspora does not lead to a future tragedy. So we’re focused together on the traveler phenomena.”

Comey also touched on the issue of “going dark,” the inability of investigators to tap into communication devices like tablets and smartphones, even with a judge’s order.

He said it has been a problem ever since the 1990s, but it has only gotten worse as the number of devices has increased.

He’s been hammering away at the issue of late. In a speech in D.C. earlier this month, he brought up the issue, saying that some companies have not developed products so that communications can be intercepted, or in other instances, companies have resisted court orders to turn over information. He said it’s hindered investigation at times.

On Monday, he said:

“Before we get to the place where good folks, victims of crimes come to us and say, ‘What do you mean, you can’t, I thought a judge said you, with a search warrant, could warrant could get this information.  What do you mean you can’t find the information that may help you locate a missing child, find the information that will help you break up a terrorist cell, find the information that will identify and root our pedophiles.’ Before we get to a place where our answer is, ‘I’m sorry, I can’t,’ we need to have a conversation.”

 

AG: New Strategies Needed to Respond to Active Shooter Situations

Holder speaks in Philadelphia/doj photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As police increasingly respond to “active shooter” situations, Attorney General Eric Holder said new strategies must be developed to limit the death toll, CNN reports.

Speaking at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Philadelphia, Holder said mass shootings are on the rise.

“Although research methods and results vary, it’s become clear that new strategies — and aggressive national response protocols — must be employed to stop shooters in their tracks,” Holder told the police chiefs, CNN reported.

Recent research, Holder said, indicates “an immediate, aggressive response to active shooters” is needed.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Atty Gen. Holder Says 12,000 Cops to be Laid Off This Year

ticklethewire.com

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

CHICAGO —   Times are tough.

Attorney Gen. Eric Holder brought that point home Monday morning as he spoke to a large audience at the International Association of Chiefs of Police in Chicago about the state of law enforcement in the country as departments face  budget cuts.

Holder said nearly 12,000 police officers and sheriff’s deputies will be laid off by the end of this year.

“Of course – as cities, states, and counties confront once-in-a-century financial constraints – this has never been more difficult,” said Holder.  “Across the country, mayors, sheriffs, and chiefs have been asked – not only to do more with less – but also to make painful budgetary cuts.

Holder, citing a recent economic outlook report conducted by the Justice Department’s Community Oriented Policing Strategies (COPS), said nationwide that law enforcement agencies have almost 30,000 unfilled vacancies–the first-ever national decrease in law enforcement positions.

These challenges are not insurmountable, he continued.

“Block by block, city by city, department by department, the Administration is determined – and I am determined – to help build capacity, to enable our law enforcement partners to make the most of precious resources, and to encourage their most promising and effective public safety efforts,” he said.

Holder also noted that last month COPS Director Bernard Melekian announced more than $240 million in grants, which will support the hiring and retention of more than a thousand officers across the nation.

FBI Tells Police Officials No Immediate Threats Following bin Laden Killing

Chief Charles Ramsey/dept. photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Leaders of the nation’s largest police organizations said they were briefed by the FBI after the killing of Osama bin Laden and told there appeared to be no immediate threats or active terrorist plots, USA Today reported.

The paper reported that the briefing came after federal officials were warned to be on guard for any acts of retaliation.

USA Today reported that Philly Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, president of the Major City Chiefs Association, said the FBI provided the briefing last week. Other organizations in attendance included the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Sheriffs Association.

Meanwhile, various media organizations reported that materials seized at the bin Laden compound showed that he was encouraging attacks on smaller cities in the U.S.

Police Chiefs Endorse Andrew Traver to Head ATF

Andrew Traver/zerocancer.org photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) on Friday voiced its “strong support” for the nomination of Andrew Traver as Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

Traver, who was nominated to the post by President Obama last month, currently heads up ATF’s Chicago division.

“A career law enforcement professional like Andrew Traver is an ideal selection to lead ATF, IACP President Mark Marshall, chief of the Smithfield, Va. Police Department, said in a statement.

“Throughout his career, Special Agent Traver has demonstrated an unyielding commitment to protecting public safety. His 23 years of experience at ATF have provided him the opportunity to work with law enforcement agencies throughout the United States.”

“He has gained a unique understanding of the challenges and complexities they face in combating firearms violence, gang crime and other threats to our communities.”

“The IACP urges the Judiciary Committee and the members of the United States Senate to confirm Special Agent Traver’s nomination in a timely fashion.”