Get Our Newsletter



Links

Columnists



Site Search


Entire (RSS)
Comments (RSS)

Archive Calendar

November 2019
S M T W T F S
« Oct    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Guides

How to Become a Bounty Hunter



Tag: mass shootings

ATF Loses Agents And Resources As Gun Deaths, Mass Shootings Rise

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

As law enforcement struggles with how to handle the proliferation of mass shootings in the U.S., the agency tasked with enforcing gun laws is underfunded and without a permanent leader.

The ATF is expected to lose 300 agents to retirement in 2018 and 2019, and the agency isn’t hiring enough replacements.

The agency has no permanent leader, and its budget continues to be cut.

Kenneth E. Nelson, former acting ATF director, said the agency is being handled like “political football.”

“If they are really concerned, Congress would give ATF the resources to prevent and respond to mass shootings, but ATF is a political football,” Nelson told The Washington Times.

Since 2001, the number of gun deaths have risen 34%, but the number of federal agents – about 2,600 – has not increased.

“The growth of violent gun crime is an external challenge that has strained ATF’s ability to respond to requests for assistance to address the needs of the nation’s cities and citizens most affected by this violence,” ATF wrote, adding that “requests for services and support continue to exceed our ability to respond.”

In 2018, the ATF hired 156 agents but lost 172 to retirement. With about 17% of agents aged 50 or older, the agency is expected to lose a lot more staff.

President Trump has even discussed transferring the ATF’s responsibilities to the Treasury Department.

David Chipman, a former ATF agent, said the gun lobby is to blame.

“We all agree gun violence is a significant public safety threat, so why is the ATF the size that it is?” he said. “That is largely because the gun lobby has been concerned about an effective and aggressive ATF, and their influence over legislators has kept the ATF ineffectual, at least budgetwise.”

Homeland Security: White Supremacy Is a Leading Domestic Terrorism Threat

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Department of Homeland Security is beginning to combat white supremacy violence following the massacre in El Paso by a gunman motivated by his hatred of immigrants.

The department’s list of domestic terrorism threats now includes white supremacy, which has been on the rise since President Trump was elected.

The recent mass shootings “galvanized the Department of Homeland Security to expand its counterterrorism mission focus beyond terrorists operating aboard, to include those radicalized to violence within our borders by violent extremists of any ideology,” Kevin McAleenan, the acting secretary of Homeland Security, said at a recent speech at the Brookings Institute.

“The continuing menace of racially based violent extremism, particularly white supremacist extremism, is an abhorrent affront to our nation, the struggle and unity of its diverse population, and the core values of both our society and our department,” McAleenan said during the speech.

DHS wrote up a 40-age document explaining its plan to collect data on white nationalist threats by working with local and state governments. The document also says DHS will combat propaganda on social media.

The El Paso massacre that killed 22 people at a Walmart “was an attack on all of us, on our family,” McAleenan told The Atlantic in an interview, noting that many Homeland Security employees are Hispanic.

FBI Received Increase in Tips from the Public Following Massacres in El Paso, Toledo

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Tips to the FBI increased following the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, a sign that the public is taking the gun deaths more seriously.

The FBI’s National Threat Operations Center fielded more than 38,000 tips from the public in the first week following the Aug. 3 and Aug. 4 attacks. NTOC averages 22,000 tips, The Washington Post reports.

At least 28 people have been arrested on allegations of threatening to commit mass shootings since 31 people were killed in massacres in Texas and Ohio.

In the wake of the attacks, FBI Director Christopher Wray urged law enforcement agencies across the country to become more vigilant in their search for potential mass shooters.

The FBI said tips usually increase following “major incidents.”

“Such increases are often observed after major incidents,” the FBI said in a statement. “As always, the FBI encourages the public to remain vigilant and report any and all suspicious activity to law enforcement immediately.”

28 People Accused of Threatening Mass Shootings Since El Paso, Dayton Massacres

Photo via ATF.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

At least 28 people have been arrested on allegations of threatening to commit mass shootings since 31 people were killed in massacres in Texas and Ohio about a month ago.

In the wake of the attacks, FBI Director Christopher Wray urged law enforcement agencies across the country to become more vigilant in their search for potential mass shooters.

The targets of the threats ranged from schools and Walmart to a health clinic and Army recruitment center, according to CNN.

Some of the suspects were white nationalists, including an 18-year-old man accused of threatening a mass shooting at a Jewish community center in Youngstown, Oh. A 35-year-old Maryland man was charged after calling for the “extermination” of Hispanics.

In July, the FBI director said that white supremacy is behind an increase in domestic terrorism cases. In the past nine months, the FBI has recorded about 100 domestic terrorism arrests, which is an increase over previous years.

“A majority of the domestic terrorism cases we’ve investigated are motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacist violence,” Wray told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday.

President Trump initially said he was exploring gun control measures, such as more background checks, but it appears he has distanced himself from taking any action.

Trump Blasts Comey As a ‘Failure,’ Suggests FBI Is Incompetent

Former FBI Director James Comey

Former FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As the special counsel investigation picks up more steam, President Trump continues to go on the offensive, this time suggesting fired FBI Director James Comey’s “leadership was a disaster.”

Trump was responding to Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s show on Thursday, when Carlson blasted the FBI’s record on preventing domestic terrorism and was shootings.

“The @TuckerCarlson opening statement about our once cherished and great FBI was so sad to watch,” Trump tweeted. “James Comey’s leadership was a disaster!”

Carlson called the FBI ‘incompetent” and suggested the bureau missed opportunities to prevent recent mass murders.

“The more likely and in fact the far more terrifying explanation is incompetence,” Carlson said, referring to the Las Vegas shooting that killed 59 people. “The people running this case don’t really know what they’re doing.”

The FBI is investigating whether Trump obstructed justice when he fired Comey in May.

FBI Warned about Lone Shooters at Concerts 9 Months Before Las Vegas Massacre

police-lineBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

More than nine months before the mass shooting at a Las Vegas country music festival earlier this week, the FBI and Homeland Security warned of the threat of lone gunmen carrying out massacres during large gatherings like music venues.

The federal agencies issued a “Joint Special Event Event Threat Assessment” to warn of lone offenders launching an attack on large crowds, Foreign Police reports

A main concern cited by the December 2016 document was someone targeting the New Year’s Eve celebrations in the Las Vegas Strip.

“Unaffiliated lone offenders and [homegrown violent extremists] are of particular concern,” the document states, “due to their ability to remain undetected until operational; their willingness to attack civilians and soft targets; their ability to inflict significant casualties with weapons that do not require specialized knowledge, access, or training; and their unpredictability, as witnessed in the Orlando, Florida and San Bernardino, California terrorist attacks.”

The agencies addressed concerns “about the sustained interest by terrorists and criminals in targeting mass gatherings,” including at concerts.

FBI Abandoned System to Alert Agents When Multiple Gun Purchases Are Made

tsa gunsweek_in_review_0511_0517_2012By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI debated establishing an alert system seven years ago to determine who is making multiple gun purchases.

But the Wall Street Journal reports that the FBI abandoned the idea over legal concerns.

Such an alert system would have tipped off the FBI when the Orlando nightclub shooter made several gun purchases.

Mass shooters often make multiple gun purchases before carrying out a massacre.

The FBI and Justice Department are also considering an alert system to warn investigators when people who were once investigated for terrorism buy firearms.

Active Shooter Incidents Rise to Record Levels in the U.S., FBI Records Show

gunBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Active shooter incidents are increasing at alarming levels, reaching the highest average of incidents over a two-year period.

New FBI data shows that 2014 and 2015 each had 20 active shooter incidents, which eclipses any two-year average in the past 16 years, ABC News reports. 

The FBI defines an active shooter situation as “an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area.”

“Unlike a defined crime, such as a murder or mass killing, the active aspect inherently implies that both law enforcement personnel and citizens have the potential to affect the outcome of the event based upon their responses,” the FBI said in a 2013 study of active shooter incidents.

Between 2014 and 2015, 92 people were killed and 139 wounded in active shooter incidents.