Recently in Law Enforcement Category

Great news from Brazil

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We already know that their new President is much like President Trump - dig out the rot in the deep state and restore law and order. He was elected by a landslide as the Brazilian citizens were tired of their nation turning into a third-world shit-hole. Brazil used to be a major economy and a gorgeous place until socialism reared its ugly head. Now, the nation is on the mend.

Great news from Bloomberg:

License-to-Kill Policing to Get a Trial Run in Rio de Janeiro
Teams of marksmen next year will patrol swaths of Rio de Janeiro with high-powered weapons and a license to kill, said a security adviser to Governor-elect Wilson Witzel.

As many as 120 sharpshooters will accompany police incursions into the slums of Brazil’s postcard city to exterminate gun-toting criminals, according to Flavio Pacca, a longtime associate of Witzel who the governor-elect’s press office said will join the administration. The shooters will work in pairs -- one to pull the trigger, one to monitor conditions and videotape deaths.

“The protocol will be to immediately neutralize, slaughter anyone who has a rifle,” Witzel, a federal judge and former Brazilian marine, told reporters in Brasilia on Dec. 12. “Whoever has a rifle isn’t worried about other people’s lives, they’re ready to eliminate anyone who crosses their path. This is a grave problem, not just in Rio de Janeiro, but also in other states.”

Rio has long exemplified Brazil’s charm and its chaos, and what happens there echoes at home and abroad. Like President-elect Jair Bolsonaro, Witzel cruised to victory in October promising a brutal crackdown on criminals who make daily life a harrowing ordeal. Rio will be a proving ground for Bolsonaro’s philosophy of maximum force -- and whether law enforcement devolves into a storm of extrajudicial killings.

And they certainly need to do something:

Rio’s homicides last year surged to an eight-year high of 5,346 and robberies and muggings have more than doubled since 2011.

Some numbers. Rio has a population of 6.32 Million, Chicago, Illinois has a population of 2.7 Million. Chicago (year to date) has had 578 homicides

Rio: 1 homicide per 1,182 citizens. Chicago: 1 homicide per 4,671 citizens so Rio is just under four times (3.95) more dangerous and Chicago.

Chicago is not the murder capital of the US - St. Louis, Baltimore, Detroit and New Orleans edge out Chicago for that title but there is not much difference in the stats.

Just a little bit more - I love the quote in the last paragraph:

Bolsonaro has said cops who kill should be given medals and has promised they will be legally protected. Days after the election, video showed Rio police loading the limp, bleeding bodies of two young men accused of drug trafficking into the bed of a pick-up. Bystanders cheered, with one yelling Bolsonaro’s name.

The NGOs, human rights activists and United Nations will have a fit,” Alexandre Frota, a congressman-elect, said on Twitter while sharing the video. “But the cleansing must be done.’’

Emphasis mine - indeed and it will be fun to see them squirm in their seats. I bet that crime goes waaay down after a few of these goblins are taken out. Waaaaaaaay down.

Great news - good police work

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From The Bellingham Herald:

Drug pipeline ‘has been shut down.’ Statewide bust nets 29 arrests, guns, drugs
Nearly 30 people were arrested during a two-day drug bust across five Washington counties targeting a Mexican drug cartel.

Federal officials said the cartel was bringing heroin, fentanyl, cocaine and methamphetamine into the state using a California business to launder the money and send it to Mexico.

“The dangerous pills containing fentanyl flowing through this pipeline operated by this Western Washington distribution network has been shut down,” Keith Weis, a Drug Enforcement Administration special agent, said in a statement.

On Wednesday and Thursday, more than 400 law enforcement officers served 51 warrants on more than 50 buildings and 35 vehicles.

Twenty-nine people were arrested, as well as the owner of the California business allegedly laundering money.

The group was allegedly selling the drugs, including fentanyl-laced oxycodone pills, in Pierce, King, Kitsap, Skagit and Snohomish counties.

Good riddance - get these goblins off the streets.

Another great move by President Trump

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Not a peep in the mainstream media but this is great news - from The White House:

Statement from the Press Secretary Regarding the President’s Working Dinner with China
The President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, and President Xi Jinping of China, have just concluded what both have said was a “highly successful meeting” between themselves and their most senior representatives in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Very importantly, President Xi, in a wonderful humanitarian gesture, has agreed to designate Fentanyl as a Controlled Substance, meaning that people selling Fentanyl to the United States will be subject to China’s maximum penalty under the law.

Wonderful - here's why - from the National Institute on Drug Abuse:

Nearly half of opioid-related overdose deaths involve fentanyl
An analysis of opioid-related overdose deaths found that synthetic opioids, such as illicit fentanyl, have surpassed prescription opioids as the most common drug involved in overdose deaths in the U.S. A research letter published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) concluded that nearly half of opioid-related deaths in 2016 involved fentanyl.

Good news - make the black marketers pay the price. The stuff is so toxic that overdoses are altogether too easy. Just ask Tom Petty and Prince.

A bit of corruption to our North

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From Canada's Global News:

Secret police study finds crime networks could have laundered over $1B through Vancouver homes in 2016
The stately $17-million mansion owned by a suspected fentanyl importer is at the end of a gated driveway on one of the priciest streets in Shaughnessy, Vancouver’s most exclusive neighbourhood.

A block away is a $22-million gabled manor that police have linked to a high-stakes gambler and property developer with suspected ties to the Chinese police services.

Both mansions appear on a list of more than $1-billion worth of Vancouver-area property transactions in 2016 that a confidential police intelligence study has linked to Chinese organized crime.

The study of more than 1,200 luxury real estate purchases in B.C.’s Lower Mainland in 2016 found that more than 10 per cent were tied to buyers with criminal records. And 95 per cent of those transactions were believed by police intelligence to be linked to Chinese crime networks.

Big drug problem out here around the farm - we are only four miles from the border as the crow flies. There is an area nearby that has the last of the really cheap housing in this county so it is a haven for tweakers and druggies.

President Trump - prison reform

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Good stuff - from FOX News:

Trump backs sentencing reform bill he says will give ex-inmates 'a second chance at life'
President Trump threw his support behind a bipartisan bill to reform federal sentencing guidelines Wednesday, which he said would "reduce crime while giving our fellow citizens a chance at redemption."

"We’re all better off when former inmates can receive and re-enter society as law-abiding, productive citizens," Trump said in brief remarks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. "And thanks to our booming economy, they now have a chance at more opportunities than they’ve ever had before."

The so-called First Step Act, the first major rewrite of the nation's criminal justice sentencing laws in a generation, will boost rehabilitation efforts for federal prisoners and give judges more discretion when sentencing nonviolent offenders, particularly for drug offenses. In particular, the bill lowers the mandatory minimum sentence for non-violent repeat drug offenders from 25 to 20 years, reduces mandatory minimums for other crimes from 20 to 15 years, and makes no distinction between powder cocaine and crack cocaine.

Good - the draconian sentences do nothing to deter criminal activity. The conditions that promote criminal activity need to be addressed first. Also, an interesting bit of history:

The Senate package overhauls some of the mandatory sentencing guidelines that have been in place since 1994 legislation approved by Congress and signed into law by then-President Bill Clinton. Trump made a point of mentioning that fact in his remarks Wednesday, adding that the Clinton-era guidelines "disproportionately hurt the African-American community." He also noted that several law enforcement organizations supported the effort, saying: "In many respects, we’re getting very much tougher on the truly bad criminals, which, unfortunately, there are many. But we’re treating people differently for different crimes."

There is not a one-size-fits-all way to deal with criminality. President Clinton's law tried to do this and failed.

Good catch - from Zero Hedge:

Mexico Seizes Record 50 Tons Of Meth From Superlab
After locating a massive drug laboratory near the town of Alcoyonqui, in Culiacán, Sinaloa, personnel of the Secretariat of the Navy seized 50 tons of methamphetamine, allegedly from the Sinaloa Cartel, in the most significant drug bust of this kind in the history of Mexico.

According to Sin Embargo News, the Secretariat of the Navy (Semar) said the synthetic drug was discovered in a rustic laboratory and two separate underground bunkers. The military operation, which began on Thursday evening, involved roughly 50 troops. It was only until Friday morning was the size of the cache realized.

A military source said the camp, of about 500 square meters, was operated by the Sinaloa Cartel. The laboratories were divided into four sections for the preparation of chemical precursor or base, rest, reactors, and cooling. Within the rural compound, there was a building for at least 30 people, but military personnel did not find anyone during the operation.

Emphasis mine - someone in the military leaked news of the raid. SImple as that. A bit more:

The meth superlab in Mexico is very disturbing because ultimately it will end up in America’s inner cities and rural towns. The Centers for Disease Control estimates drug overdose deaths based on a current flow of mortality data from the National Vital Statistics System has just reached a record of 71,568 Americans in 2017.

That is a 6.6 percent jump in overdose deaths over 2016 and represents a rapid deterioration of America’s inner core: The middle class.

Not just opioids. We need a wall now. This lab is gone but the chemists and suppliers are still out there and they are building a newer and bigger and better lab right now.

A curious omission - ICE

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From the San Mateo Daily Journal:

Authorities say they've busted large Mexico-to-US drug ring
Nearly two dozen people were arrested Wednesday and charged with using small aircraft to smuggle heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine over the U.S. border at the behest of one of Mexico's most notorious drug cartels, authorities said.

The arrests of 22 suspects come on the heels of a nearly three-year investigation into three drug trafficking organizations that authorities say were working on behalf of the Sinaloa cartel. The groups, which received the drugs from the cartel in northern Mexico, would then stash them in soup cans, inside hidden compartments in cars and used small aircraft — though authorities wouldn't say whether they were manned or drones — to transport the drugs over the border, officials said.

"More than seizing the drugs and the money, this investigation was able to identify the top level Mexico-based traffickers who directed the transactions and who thought they were using secure communications to commit the crimes," said Tracy Wilkison, the first assistant U.S. attorney in Los Angeles.

Authorities seized 850 pounds (385 kilograms) of methamphetamine, nearly a ton (907 kilograms) of cocaine, 93 pounds (42 kilograms) of heroin, almost 50 pounds (23 kilograms) of marijuana and $1.42 million.

That is a major bust - congratulations to the arresting officers. Curious omission though - no mention of the agencies involved in this operation. Fortunately, other news sources do mention who - from Los Angeles station KTLA:

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, IRS, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, United States Department of Homeland Security as well as several local law enforcement agencies were involved in the raids Wednesday.

Emphasis mine - what with all the public pressure to disband ICE, it is not politic to point out that ICE does a lot more than just deporting people who are in our country illegally. A lot more. They are a force for good - for law and for order.
Tip of the hat to Don Surber for the two links.

Great news - drug bust

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Getting some goblins off the street. From The Seattle Times:

Dozens arrested in five-county drug bust in Puget Sound area
More than 35 members of what authorities called a major drug-trafficking ring were arrested Wednesday in a series of raids in King, Pierce, Snohomish, Skagit and Thurston counties, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The ring allegedly trafficked in cocaine, heroin, oxycodone, illegal marijuana and fentanyl, according to a news release. During the Wednesday operation detectives seized 12 pounds of heroin, more than two kilos of cocaine, a pound of methamphetamine, 124 pounds of marijuana, 41 firearms and hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, the news release said.

During the investigation, authorities used wiretaps and heard conspirators talk about shootings, including the Sept. 4 shooting outside a Renton hookah lounge that wounded at least two people.

It was the fourth bust in the past four months in which local and federal law enforcement targeted drug-trafficking in the Seattle area.

Emphasis mine - good! Roll the gangs up - make it not profitible to operate in this area. No mention of nation of origin for these mokes but I am betting they were not born in Seattle...

From CBS:

Secret Service arrests White House contractor with outstanding attempted murder warrant
The Secret Service arrested a contractor outside the White House on Tuesday for an outstanding warrant that includes an attempted murder charge, CBS News Washington correspondent Paula Reid reports.

A spokesperson for the sheriff's department of Prince George's Country, Maryland, told CBS News that the department had an outstanding warrant for a person by the name of Martese M. Edwards, on an attempted first-degree murder charge, dated May 17.

The Secret Service issued the following statement to CBS News:

"On June 4, 2018, the U.S. Secret Service was notified by the Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS) that Martese Edwards was the subject of a warrant issued out of Prince Georges County, MD. On June 5, 2018, Edwards was promptly arrested by Secret Service Uniformed Division Officers at a checkpoint outside of the White House complex when he was reporting to work as a contractor. Edwards was transported to MPD Second District for processing."

The Associated Press said the Secret Service didn't provide Edwards' exact job or where he worked at the White House. It wasn't immediately clear if he has a lawyer.

Close call.

Those cowards should be fired. From the Miami Herald:

Paramedics wanted to enter Parkland school where kids were dying. BSO said no.
During the chaos of the Parkland school shooting, paramedics from Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Department were desperate to go inside the building where students were wounded and dying.

Michael McNally, deputy chief for Coral Springs fire-rescue, asked six times for permission to send in specialized teams of police officers and paramedics, according to an incident report he filed after the Feb. 14 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting that left 17 people dead.

But every time McNally asked to deploy the two Rescue Task Force teams — each made up of three paramedics and three to four law enforcement officers — the Broward Sheriff's Office captain in charge of the scene, Jan Jordan, said no.

"The [BSO] incident commander advised me, 'She would have to check,' " McNally wrote in the report released Thursday by Coral Springs. "After several minutes, I requested once again the need to deploy RTF elements into the scene to ... initiate treatment as soon as possible. Once again, the incident commander expressed that she 'would have to check before approving this request.' "

Even after the shooter had been arrested, the answer remained the same.

A bit more:

In his report, McNally, who had been ordered to act as a liaison between Coral Springs fire command and BSO, also claimed BSO's command post was severely dysfunctional. Communication was difficult, McNally said, because he often could not locate Jordan, BSO's district commander for Parkland.

"The command post was inundated with too many people and made it impossible to establish and function," McNally wrote, echoing criticisms of the disorganization and lack of a unified command structure that plagued BSO's response to a deadly shooting at the Fort-Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport last year.

Christ on a Corn Dog - this is what you train for. I am a very low-level responder with CERT and our local WECG and ARES but I have been through ICS training. Everyone learns what their job is and they do it. ICS was developed (PDF)  to provide a clear understandable chain of command throughout the duration of an incident.

For the Broward Sherrif's Office to have not trained their staff is unconcionable.

A fun evening

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Just got back from a meeting with these people: Camano Preparedness Group

A fun and well run meeting; they are a 501(c)3 organization so have revenue from grants and donations to buy radio equipment and supplies. These people are ready for the big one.

Great news - drug dealers

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Make the price a lot higher - from CNBC:

Attorney General Jeff Sessions outlines when to use death penalty on drug traffickers
Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday issued new guidance to federal prosecutors on how to apply the death penalty to numerous drug-related crimes.

Sessions advised federal prosecutors to utilize laws permitting capital punishment as a viable sentence, both in violent and non-violent cases.

In the memo sent to U.S. attorneys Wednesday morning, Sessions said that some of the "appropriate cases" to seek the death penalty include murder related to racketeering crimes, gun deaths occurring during drug trafficking crimes and murder related to criminal enterprise.

The memo also encouraged prosecutors to pursue capital punishment in cases involving "dealing in extremely large quantities of drugs."

The laws are already on the books: The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act (PDF) — that Congress passed and President Bill Clinton signed in 1994. 60,000 drug related deaths in 2016 as compared to 36,252 firearm related deaths in 2015 (no listing of suicide v/s murder). In 2015, there were 57,567 deaths from poisoning.

Blaming the NRA

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Pot meet kettle - all that is wrong with the Broward Florida Police Department summed up in one infographic:


A criminal behind bars

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 Fun story about some good investigative work. From the Ontario Canada station CTV:

'America's most-wanted deadbeat dad' caught in failed Alberta cherry pit scam
A man dubbed “America’s most-wanted deadbeat dad” has been arrested thanks to the sharp wits of a small-town Alberta restaurateur, who managed to identify the man after he suspected he was being scammed.

Joseph Stroup, 64, appeared in a Chicago courtroom last week to face charges related to more than US$560,000 in unpaid child support. The divorced father of four sold his internet business for $2 million, but hasn’t paid child support since 1996, according to the U.S. Office of the Inspector General. He eventually climbed to the top of the Inspector General’s list of most-wanted deadbeat dads, but didn’t turn up again until last November in Bearspaw, Alta., where he was caught living under the name “Joop Cousteau.”

And the story?

Restaurant owner Scott Winograd fingered the wanted man through a carefully-laid trap that he set once he realized he was being duped by a wanted man, who seemed to have been laying low in the small Alberta community.

Winograd says Stroup loved to drop in to the Bear’s Den restaurant and brag about himself, claiming to be a former doctor and Oxford University graduate who “got bored” and became a vice-president at Google.

“He was an odd duck, there was no question about that,” Winograd told CTV News.

What happened:

“Ten minutes after he called Joe the server over, and said: ‘I bit down on a Maraschino cherry pit and I broke some dental work,” Winograd said. “He was very adamant that he had $65,000 worth of dental work in his mouth, and he passed what looked like a cherry pit off to the server.”

Maraschino cherries are often used for cocktails and are typically sold with the pits removed, Winograd pointed out.

Winograd says the man came back the next day with a handwritten form outlining a hefty bill for his “damaged” dental work. Winograd took note of the name on the form and looked up “Joop Cousteau” on Google.

Winograd found a Facebook page set up by U.S. law enforcement under the name Joop Cousteau, with a mugshot of the wanted man. “Joop Cousteau is the alias used by Joseph W. Stroup,” said a post on the page from May 6, 2015. The post included a link to Stroup’s entry on the Status of Deadbeats list.

Heh - gotta love the internet.  The restaurateur offered Stroup a free meal but sat him at the counter in full view of the surveillance cameras. Grabbed a screen cap and sent it off to the Canadian and US law enforcement - this was the response:

“Within an hour the FBI, the U.S. Marshals and the Inspector General all called,” he said.

You can try to run but something will always trip you up. The perfect getaway only happens in storybooks.

Dumb criminal(s) - Canada

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Not quite bright - from the CBC:

Fleeing bank robbery suspects caught after stopping at a Tim Hortons drive-thru
A man and woman allegedly fleeing a bank robbery were arrested in Bouctouche, N.B., on Monday after they stopped at a Tim Hortons drive-thru.

At least six police cars swooped in on the suspects before they had a chance to place an order.

Several thousand dollars have been recovered, the RCMP said.

A 24-year-old man and 26-year-old woman, both from Moncton, face charges.

They had a description of the vehicle, there is only one road between the two cities and an alert officer spotted the vehicle and turned and started following them. DOH!

Now this will be fun to follow

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From The Daily Caller:

‘Assassination Style’: Widow Of Man Slain In The Bundys’ Oregon Standoff Is Suing The Feds
The widow of Robert “LaVoy” Finicum is suing the Oregon State Police, the FBI and others over her husband’s death during the 2016 armed takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon.

Jeanette Finicum filed a wrongful death lawsuit Friday, the second anniversary of her husband’s death. The lawsuit is for $5 million each for herself, her 12 children and her deceased husband’s estate, a total of $70 million plus court costs, The Oregonian reports.

LaVoy was “fatally shot three times in the back, assassination style, by one or more militarized officers of the Oregon State Police and/or FBI,” the lawsuit states. “He was deliberately executed by a pre-planned government ambush, after he had exited his vehicle with his hands up.”

Good - they were breaking the law as it was written so they should have been prosecuted but shooting an unarmed person in the back goes well beyond what is justice...

Now this will be interesting to follow

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Talk about having repercussions - from Associated Press:

Sessions terminates US policy that let legal pot flourish
The Trump administration threw the burgeoning movement to legalize marijuana into uncertainty Thursday as it lifted an Obama-era policy that kept federal authorities from cracking down on the pot trade in states where the drug is legal. Attorney General Jeff Sessions will now leave it up to federal prosecutors to decide what to do when state rules collide with federal drug law.

Sessions’ action, just three days after a legalization law went into effect in California, threatened the future of the young industry, created confusion in states where the drug is legal and outraged both marijuana advocates and some members of Congress, including Sessions’ fellow Republicans. Many conservatives are wary of what they see as federal intrusion in areas they believe must be left to the states.

Marijuana is regulated by the federal government - good test of the 10th Amendment v/s the Supremacy Clause. I live in Washington State where recreational use was made legal. No spike in crime or traffic accidents has been observed.

Portland - staying weird stupid

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Reading between the lines on this article from The Oregonian:

Portland police to halt, purge all gang designations
Portland police next month will end their more than 20-year-old practice of designating people as gang members or gang associates in response to strong community concerns about the labels that have disproportionately affected minorities.

So some activists in Portland are complaining that the majority of people involved in gang activities are people of color? They decry this so what does Portland do? Roll over, play the diversity card (All Hail Diversity!) and kill off one of the tools they have for policing illegal gang activity. The Oregonian also published the Police data:

People on gang list by race
Of the 359 people on the gang list, 18% are white, 81% are a racial or ethnic minority, and 64% are black. Unlike the U.S. Census, the list does not allow people to be multiple races, or to be both "white" and "Hispanic."

The police need to be able to do their jobs and protect the other 99% of Portland's citizens who want to live their lives in peace. The actions of a few a**holes are making it difficult for everyone.

Great news from the Houston, Texas ABC affiliate:

Houston police catch 14 armed robbers and looters amid flood emergency
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said he is not going to tolerate criminals taking advantage of people in the community during such a devastating time.

He said his officers arrested 14 alleged looters since Sunday.

Those arrested will face stiffer punishments under a Texas law providing heftier penalties during a crisis, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

"People displaced or harmed in this storm are not going to be easy prey," Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said.

Burglarizing a home would normally bring a penalty of two to 20 years in prison, but now brings five years to life. "This is the state of Texas. We are a welcoming city, but we are not going to tolerate people victimizing others," Acevedo said.

Emphasis mine - good! Crime is stupid and it should hurt. How much is that television really worth to you?

Way to go - New Jersey

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Major props to the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness - just declared Antifa to be a terrorist organization:

Anarchist Extremists: Antifa
Anti-fascist groups, or “Antifa,” are a subset of the anarchist movement and focus on issues involving racism, sexism, and anti-Semitism, as well as other perceived injustices.

    • Self-described Antifa groups have been established across the United States and in several major cities, including New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, and San Francisco. A majority of New Jersey-based anarchist groups are affiliated with the Antifa movement and are opposed to “fascism,” racism, and law enforcement. Antifa groups coordinate regionally and have participated in protests in New York City and Philadelphia. There are three loosely organized chapters in New Jersey, known as the North Jersey Antifa, the South Jersey Antifa, and the HubCity Antifa New Brunswick (Middlesex County).
    • In December 2016, a group known as the Antifascist Action-Nebraska engaged in a doxing campaign against a prominent member of American Vanguard, a white supremacist organization. The group published his personal information on several social media platforms and posted fliers on the University of Nebraska Omaha campus, calling for his expulsion.
    • On March 28, a small fight occurred between Antifa members and supporters of the US President during a rally in Seaside Heights (Ocean County).  Because of advance publicity about the event on social media, local and state law enforcement officers were able to keep altercations to a minimum.

More at the site - Oregon and Washington need to do this. Getting out of hand here.

Illegal immigrants - one example

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The cream of the crop is crossing our borders to live here - from Texas' My San Antonio:

Seven life sentences for ex-Zetas boss who took part in slaughters
A former regional boss for the Zetas was sentenced Wednesday to seven life terms for his role in 18 gory deaths, and for participating with the cartel in drug-trafficking operations that included a rampage in which more than 300 people in northern Mexico were slaughtered.

Marciano "Chano" Millan Vasquez stood straight-faced as U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez pronounced life sentences for seven charges, and ordered them to run consecutively, then stacked another five years for a separate count. The prison terms for two other counts were ordered to run concurrent.

At least we are finally getting tough with them. The murders all happened in Mexico - a bit more:

All of the killings, including the 18 pegged specifically on Millan, took place in Mexico between 2009 and 2015.

Millan was arrested in 2015 while living under a fake name in San Antonio, where he had settled with some relatives. He was tried here last year and convicted on all 10 charges he faced, including killing in furtherance of drug-trafficking crimes. U.S. law allowed the federal government to prosecute him for killings in another country as long as those violent acts were part of a drug conspiracy with connections to the U.S.

More at the link - the murders are especially horrid. About the Zetas:

The trial also revealed that the Zetas controlled law enforcement and other local or regional officials by bribing them or threatening them. Explosive testimony also alleged that the Zetas paid millions of dollars in cash bribes to officials of the Mexican state of Coahuila, including a previous governor, Humberto Moreira, and his brother Rubén Moreira, the current governor. Both brothers have denied the allegations.

In exchange for the bribes, witnesses testified, the Zetas were protected as they took over the state of Coahuila, which borders Texas from just west of Laredo to the Big Bend region. Witnesses said state police helped gang leaders evade federal authorities, the gang was able to invest in construction and coal mining and the Zetas took control of state jails, where they had freedom to carry out an array of crimes.

Gee wiz - if there was some way to block the border so they could not cross - like a wall or something. Makes me really wonder why our legislators do not build the wall. Who is paying them off...

And then, we have stories like this one - also from My San Antonio:

San Antonio man freed by Obama pleads guilty to another drug charge
A San Antonio man who was freed from life in prison by President Barack Obama pleaded guilty Thursday to another drug charge he received after crashing his car while fleeing from officers.

Robert M. Gill, 68, whose life sentence for cocaine and heroin distribution conspiracy was commuted by Obama in 2015, was profiled last year in the San Antonio Express-News about his readjustment to life on the outside.

And what led up to the car crash:

In February, back in San Antonio, he picked up a backpack with a kilo of cocaine at a supermarket parking lot on the West Side from a confidential source working with Homeland Security Investigations. Gill sped away from Bexar County sheriff’s deputies who tried to pull him over, crashing into another car at Callaghan and Bandera roads, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Bettina Richardson.

A kilo is not a personal stash - this is possession with intent to sell. Lock him away and throw away the key.

Heh - some fun in Albuquerque

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From the Albuquerque Journal:

TV news crew’s truck stolen while reporting on Downtown Albuquerque crime
Someone stole a news station’s SUV in Downtown Albuquerque while the crew was gathering footage for a story about crime in the area.

Michelle Donaldson, KOB News Director, said the crew watched as the vehicle was stolen near 1st and Central.

The crew was in the area reporting on recent concerns about crime and safety by the local business Lavu when they became part of the story.

“I have a rule, that you can never be the lead of your own newscast,” Donaldson said. “So this violates that rule.”

That crew is not going to live this down for a long long time. A bit more:

A bit of local fun

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From the Bellingham Herald:

Blaine border officers find more than 53 pounds of meth in SUV’s hidden compartment
Border agents found seven packages of methamphetamine weighing more than 53 pounds in a vehicle trying to cross into the U.S. on Saturday, U.S. Department of Homeland Security said in a news release.

A 40-year-old man driving a Hyundai SUV was trying to enter from Canada and told U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers that he and a 33-year-old male passenger were visiting the country for pleasure.

An officer referred the vehicle for further inspection and found the meth in a hidden compartment through non-intrusive inspection technology, officials said.

Nasty stuff - I hope they spend at least ten years behind bars for this.

Good news - Winner loses

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From Bloomberg:

Accused Leaker of Top-Secret U.S. Report Loses Bail Request
A former U.S. Air Force linguist charged with passing a top-secret report about Russian hacking to a news organization was denied bail by a magistrate judge who said the woman had taken other classified information that could still be passed to enemies of the U.S.

Reality Leigh Winner, 25, a government contract worker with top-secret security clearance, pleaded not guilty Thursday to an espionage charge in federal court in Augusta, Georgia, and was ordered to remain in custody out of concern she poses a risk to national security.

A federal prosecutor said in court that authorities had uncovered a series of “new and downright frightening" other acts by Winner, including inserting a thumb drive into her Air Force computer and taking classified information while she was still in the military.

“When you take a thumb drive in a top-secret computer as she did, we don’t know what happened to it," U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Epps said at the hearing. “That falls into the landscape of danger to the community but it is also a danger to the nation."

I hope they throw the book at her - this was an unconscionable act of treason. 25 is old enough to know better.

It may be quasi legal in Washington State but it is not on the East Coast - from The Seattle Times:

Seattle police officer charged in large-scale pot-smuggling operation
A veteran Seattle police officer has been charged with conspiracy to distribute marijuana along with three other people federal agents say were part of a large-scale drug-smuggling operation responsible for delivering at least 100 kilograms of marijuana to the East Coast.

According to a 15-page complaint unsealed Monday in U.S. District Court, Officer Alex Chapackdee — part of a five-member community policing team in the department’s South Precinct — is charged with conspiracy to distribute marijuana along with Tuan Van Le, Samath Khanhphontgphane and Phi Nguyen in what a federal task force is referring to as the “Tuan Van Le Drug Trafficking Network.”

The complaint alleges that Chapackdee and others were “regularly smuggling large amounts of marijuana from the Western District of Washington to locations on the East Coast, including but not limited to locations in the Baltimore, Maryland, area.”

And the investigation was ongoing:

Chapackdee has been under surveillance since at least 2016, when the local FBI opened a public-corruption case in addition to the drug investigation. The investigation included the placement of a camera hidden on a utility pole outside his Seattle apartment and warrants to monitor his phone calls and track his cellphone signal, allowing the task force to track his trips back east.

Talk about being given enough rope. I hope he goes away for a long long time - this is a blot on the Seattle Police Department's reputation.

Someone is lying very low with a huge bank account - from Reuters:

U.S. has not found "one dollar" of drug lord El Chapo's assets - official
U.S. authorities have not been able to find any trace of ill-gotten assets belonging to jailed drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, Mexico's attorney general said on Wednesday.

Before he was captured last year and extradited to the United States in January to stand trial, Guzman was one of the world's most wanted drug traffickers and believed to have accumulated a fortune from reigning over his Sinaloa Cartel over many years.

"As of today, U.S. authorities have not found not even one dollar of El Chapo's assets," Mexican Attorney General Raul Cervantes said in an interview with top local broadcaster Televisa.

And of course, dealing with these mokes is like playing a game of Whack-A-Mole:

In the same interview, Cervantes said that the relative upstart Jalisco New Generation Cartel is now Mexico's largest criminal organization, eclipsing the country's more familiar criminal syndicates like Sinaloa or the Zetas.

On Tuesday, Mexican security forces arrested Damaso Lopez, who the United States once described as Guzman's "right hand man" but had been locked in a bloody struggle for control of the Sinaloa Cartel against the sons of El Chapo.

Knock one down, two more spring up in their place. This is a problem with the Mexican government and not with the cartels. They will never be serious as long as the crime is exported to the United States.

Life emulates fiction

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From the Las Cruces, Arizona Sun-News:

Ex-science teacher from Las Cruces breaks bad
A former science teacher in New Mexico manufactures methamphetamine. Sound familiar?

The 3rd Judicial District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday that John W. Gose, who taught science at schools in Las Cruces and El Paso, pleaded guilty to charges that he manufactured and possessed methamphetamine.

Gose, 56, of San Miguel, pleaded guilty to two counts of trafficking methamphetamine by manufacturing and one count each of possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. He entered the pleas before state District Judge Fernando R. Macias in 3rd Judicial District Court in Las Cruces.

He should have watched the entire series to see that nobody got out alive.

From the United States Department of Justice:

Pursuant to Executive Order on Public Safety, Department of Justice Releases Data on Incarcerated Aliens
President Trump’s Executive Order on Public Safety in the Interior of the United States requires the Department of Justice to collect relevant data and provide quarterly reports on data collection efforts. The data in this release shows a significant prison population of incarcerated aliens.

“Illegal aliens who commit additional crimes in the United States are a threat to public safety and a burden on our criminal justice system,” said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “This is why we must secure our borders through a wall and effective law enforcement, and we must strengthen cooperation between federal, state and local governments as we strive to fulfill our sacred duty of protecting and serving the American people.”

And some numbers:

There are 45,493 foreign-born inmates currently in BOP custody, of which 3,939 are U.S. citizens (either naturalized or derivative). Of the remaining 41,554 foreign-born inmates (aliens):

    • Approximately 22,541 (54.2 percent) are aliens for which final immigration orders have been issued for their removal;
    • Approximately 13,886 (33.4 percent) are aliens who are under ICE investigation for possible removal;
    • Approximately 5,101 (12.3 percent) are aliens still pending adjudication (in other words, ICE has charged these aliens as removal cases, but a final disposition has not yet been reached); and
    • Approximately 26 (0.1 percent) are aliens who have been granted relief on the basis of asylum claims.

Close the borders now. We have always had a legitimate path for people who want to legally come to this nation and become citizens. It is these free-loaders who are the problem.

Well - it is against Federal Law

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Happy 4-20 day everyone. This makes me wonder what they were thinking - from US News and World Report:

Federal Charges for 7 Pot Activists Who Offered 4/20 Joints to Congressional Staff
U.S. Capitol Police officers unexpectedly arrested seven marijuana activists on federal charges Thursday as they gave away free joints to Capitol Hill staffers in compliance with a local legalization law.

Activists affiliated with the D.C. Cannabis Campaign, or DCMJ, did not plan on getting arrested, and sought to stand on non-federal land – a sidewalk near Senate offices – to avoid intervention by the Capitol Police.

A ballot initiative approved by District of Columbia voters in 2014 allows adults 21 and older to possess 2 ounces of pot and to give it away. Although local law generally is respected, marijuana possession for almost any reason remains a federal crime.

A bit more - makes sense:

A police officer who was not authorized to speak on the record said activists were being targeted for distribution, and that, even though it also is federally illegal, mere possession of marijuana on the sidewalk would be tolerated – a point underscored by the fact that two large cannabis plants sat undisturbed near the site of the arrests.

And unclear on the concept:

Nikolas Schiller, the other co-founder of the D.C. Cannabis Campaign, took on emceeing duties following Eidinger's arrest, and announced the giveaway had to end early.

"It looks like the police stole most of our cannabis," Schiller said. "We're going to be suing the hell out of U.S. Capitol Police."

Good luck with that lawsuit buddy...

Our Attorney General - from Breitbart:

Jeff Sessions: MS-13 Could Be Designated a Terrorist Organization
Attorney General Jeff Sessions continued his campaign against the vicious MS-13 gang on Fox News’s Tucker Tuesday evening, telling host Tucker Carlson that the group may qualify as a terrorist organization.

“The government of El Salvador has designated MS-13 a terrorist organization. Would it be helpful for our government to do the same?” Carlson asked. “I think so, perhaps. It could qualify for that,” was Sessions’s response.

Designating MS-13 a “foreign terrorist organization” would make providing any material support for the group, here or abroad, a felony, and compel U.S. financial institutions to freeze any assets they reasonably believe belong to the group. The determination is made by the State Department and not AG Sessions’s Justice Department, but Sessions’s willingness to support such a designation speaks to how seriously he takes the threat from the gang.

“This is one of the most violent gangs in the history of our country,” Sessions said of MS-13. He cited the group’s use of machetes and willingness to kill and prostitute children, as they have done across the United States.

Good - now if they just add Antifa to the list things would be wonderful.

Great video about Search and Rescue

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From the King County Search and Rescue team - they are south of here - Seattle is in King County.

For the longest time, our county - Whatcom - had been listed as being a sanctuary county where no action would be taken after receiving a request from Department of Homeland Security. Our Sheriff just corrected this today and brought to my attention the origin of that listing. From his letter:

Sheriff Elfo’s Letter To Citizens Regarding Cooperation With DHS-ICE
Earlier this month I learned from the news media that Whatcom County, along with many other counties in Washington, is listed on a federal web-site as having “enacted policies which limit cooperation Immigration and Customs Enforcement” (ICE), a component agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is in the interest of public safety that the Sheriff’s Office cooperates with ICE to ensure an orderly transfer of criminal aliens to federal custody after the resolution of state charges. The Sheriff’s Office has a long history of doing just this. Whatcom County’s designation as “non-cooperative” does not reflect the practices we have adopted to ensure cooperation with ICE or a decision of a federal court within our 9th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals that set forth constitutional requirements and limitations.

And the reporting?

Last week, I requested the regional ICE “Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations” in Seattle to explain Whatcom County’s listing. After researching the matter, the acting director of the office advised me that his agents reported that the Sheriff’s Office has been fully cooperative and it appeared that the County should not have been listed as “non-cooperative.” He further explained that the decisions on county designations are made at the agency’s national headquarters in the District of Columbia on the basis of newspaper articles that followed the court decision. The acting director agreed to work to assist us in being removed from the “non-cooperating” list. However, he further indicated that many counties across the country were also voicing objections and that the issue may take some time to resolve.

So some unelected bureaucrat in the other Washington decided to list Whatcom County as a sanctuary county despite it not being so. Talk about a poor attempt at virtue signalling. Sheriff Elfo concludes his letter with the following:

I was not contacted by anyone from ICE prior to the Sheriff’s Office being included on the “non-cooperative” list. Whatcom County is not a sanctuary for criminal aliens and the Sheriff’ Office fully cooperates with ICE on the transfer of criminal aliens to the extent permitted by law. I can only conclude that the decision was made within the realm of a large bureaucracy that chose not to review the relationships, policies and practices that exist within our community to ensure public safety and cooperation or the Constitution as interpreted by a federal judge, which I took an oath to uphold.

Late on Tuesday (March 29th) I received notice from ICE that effective Sunday (April 2nd) their entire process for requesting the transfer of criminal aliens to federal custody is being revised as to scope and procedure. The new policy does not provide for the presentation of warrants but rather insists that Sheriffs accept revised detainer request forms. There was no prior discussion with Sheriffs on this process. There Prosecuting Attorney Dave McEachran is reviewing these federal changes and will provide me with advice that will help ensure adherence to the requirements of the Constitution. I will continue to work closely with ICE to effectuate public safety and the requirements of the law.

Great - we have some fantastic people working in the Sheriff's department - I have met many of them working for CERT and various radio groups and I am very glad that we have them on our side.

Again, someone coming in to improve themselves and their families are one thing - there are avenues of naturalization for them to follow. Unfortunately, about 10% of the immigrants are criminals and need to be dealt with promptly, fairly and returned to the nation of their birth, not cossetted and put on the public dole here until they commit another crime.

And the craziness begins - a three-fer

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Now that President Trump is cracking down on Sanctuary Cities, three cities are pushing back. Here are three links to stories:

It will be interesting to listen to their tune a year from now when that sweet Federal money has dried up for their pet projects - their bread and circuses.

90% of the people coming in are fine and just want to make a better life for them and their families. The other 10% comprise a significant security threat - they are criminals who repeatedly offend, are deported only to come back and re-offend. These mokes need to be treated differently.

This is a wonderful law

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Sure, there is great potential for abuse but I bet that the people being prosecuted will have multiple sets of evidence gathered against them because the police know this is controversial. From the Arizona Capital Times:

Arizona Senate votes to seize assets of those who plan, participate in protests that turn violent
Claiming people are being paid to riot, Republican state senators voted Wednesday to give police new power to arrest anyone who is involved in a peaceful demonstration that may turn bad — even before anything actually happened.

SB1142 expands the state’s racketeering laws, now aimed at organized crime, to also include rioting. And it redefines what constitutes rioting to include actions that result in damage to the property of others.

People's views pro and con:

Quezada said, though, that everything that constitutes rioting already is a crime, ranging from assault to criminal damage, and those responsible can be individually prosecuted. He said the purpose of this bill appears to be designed to chill the First Amendment rights of people to decide to demonstrate in the first place for fear something could wrong.

But Sen. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, said that chilling effect is aimed at a very specific group of protesters.

“You now have a situation where you have full-time, almost professional agent-provocateurs that attempt to create public disorder,’’ he said.

“A lot of them are ideologues, some of them are anarchists,’’ Kavanagh continued. “But this stuff is all planned.’’

There’s something else: By including rioting in racketeering laws, it actually permits police to arrest those who are planning events. And Kavanagh, a former police officer, said if there are organized groups, “I should certainly hope that our law enforcement people have some undercover people there.’’

“Wouldn’t you rather stop a riot before it starts?’’ Kavanagh asked colleagues during debate. “Do you really want to wait until people are injuring each other, throwing Molotov cocktails, picking up barricades and smashing them through businesses in downtown Phoenix?’’

Senator Kavanagh has it exactly correct. We have seen James O'Keefe's videos where he infiltrated and videoed the people planning the inaugural protests - the three ringleaders were subsequently arrested on this evidence. This is a wonderful law when applied carefully with sufficient evidence.

About those borders

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Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) is one of the worst of the latin street gangs - from Washington DC station WUSA-9:

Gang recruiting seen as early as elementary school
It starts early. WUSA9 learned Thursday, gang leaders are recruiting new members in a disturbing place: Elementary Schools.

“Oh grade-school. They're recruiting in grade-school but generally 5th grade and on,” said Northern Virginia Regional Task Force Director Jay Lanham.

It may feel like they're babies, but 5th grade and on, the time kids are starting to find themselves, has become a prime target age for MS-13 gang recruiting especially, according to Lanham.

His team is aiding the investigation into the gang-related murder of 15-year-old Alexandra Reyes-Rivas, the Montgomery County teen found dead in Springfield, Va. this past weekend.

Secure the borders and stamp crap like this out.

The recent spate of ICE raids

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Are not just random targeting - from CNS News:

ICE Nabs Slew of Sexual Offenders in Nationwide Sweep
Last week, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) launched a series of targeted enforcement operations across the country. These operations targeted public safety threats, such as convicted criminal aliens and gang members, as well as individuals who have violated our nation’s immigration laws, including those who illegally re-entered the country after being removed and immigration fugitives ordered removed by federal immigration judges.

ICE officers in the Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, San Antonio and New York City areas of responsibility arrested more than 680 individuals who pose a threat to public safety, border security or the integrity of our nation’s immigration system.

Approximately 75 percent of those arrested are criminal aliens, convicted of crimes including a range of sexual offenses:

    • Homicide,
    • Aggravated sexual abuse,
    • Sexual assault of a minor,
    • Lewd and lascivious acts with a child,
    • Indecent liberties with a minor,
    • Drug trafficking,
    • Battery,
    • Assault,
    • DUI (Driving Under the Influence of a controlled substance), and
    • Weapons charges.

Monday, Dept. of Homeland Security Sec. John F. Kelly applauded all those who contributed to the enforcement sweep for their bravery and dedication.

Good - let the good intelligent ones come here, assimilate into the American way of life and become citizens. The career criminals need to be shown that America is not a safe haven for their activities. Congratulations to President Trump for continuing to honor his campaign promises.

President Trump's Executive Orders

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Great list over at The White House: Executive Orders

He signed this one yesterday which I like:

Presidential Executive Order on Preventing Violence Against Federal, State, Tribal, and Local Law Enforcement Officers
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. It shall be the policy of the executive branch to:

(a) enforce all Federal laws in order to enhance the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers, and thereby all Americans;

(b) develop strategies, in a process led by the Department of Justice (Department) and within the boundaries of the Constitution and existing Federal laws, to further enhance the protection and safety of Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers; and

(c) pursue appropriate legislation, consistent with the Constitution's regime of limited and enumerated Federal powers, that will define new Federal crimes, and increase penalties for existing Federal crimes, in order to prevent violence against Federal, State, tribal, and local law enforcement officers.

Basically, you mess with a cop, you are messing with the Federal Government. About time. Blue Lives Matter.

Interesting legal precedent

Clever lawyer, scum for a client. From The Register:

FBI let alleged pedo walk free rather than explain how they snared him
In a surprising and worrying move, the FBI has dropped its case against a man accused of downloading child sex abuse images, rather than reveal details about how they caught him.

Jay Michaud, a middle school teacher in Vancouver, Washington, was arrested in July last year after visiting the Playpen, a dark web meeting place tens of thousands of perverts used to swap mountains of vile underage porn.

Unbeknownst to him at the time, the FBI were, for about a fortnight, running the site after taking over its servers, and managed to install a network investigative technique (NIT) on his computer to get his real public IP address and MAC address. The Playpen was hidden in the Tor anonymizing network, and the spyware was needed to unmask suspects – about 1,300 public IP addresses were collected by agents during the operation.

According to the prosecution, a police raid on his home revealed a substantial hoard of pictures and video of child sex abuse on computer equipment. But now, guilty or not, he's now off the hook after the FBI filed a motion to dismiss its own case [PDF] late last month.

Why? Because Michaud's lawyer insisted that the FBI hand over a sample of the NIT code so it could be checked to ensure that it didn't breach the terms of the warrant the FBI obtained to install the malware, and to check that it wouldn't throw up any false positives.

US District Judge Robert Bryan agreed, saying that unless the prosecution turned over the code, he'd have to dismiss the charges. The FBI has since been arguing against that, but has now decided that it's better to drop the case than reveal its techniques.

Not much they can do - bet the local police force will be keeping a very close eye on Michaud for as long as he continues to live in Vancouver. It is one thing to watch porn. Children should be cause for castration or some other penalty - that just crosses the line with me.

A fun drug bust to our South

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Stupid criminal - from the Everett Herald:

Illegally parked car leads to major drug bust
The Volkswagen Passat was parked in a handicapped space.

There was no placard.

The violation caught the eye of a police officer with Lynnwood’s Special Operations Section.

So he parked his patrol car earlier this week and walked into the America’s Best Value Inn to investigate.

A clerk at the front desk directed him to the room where the owner of the car was staying.

The threat of a parking citation turned out to be the least of the Marysville man’s worries.

The officer would sift through a series of lies and misdirection, according to court papers. His search for truth led to the discovery of 2.5 pounds of heroin and 1.5 pounds of methamphetamine as well as marijuana and pills.

And it gets better:

The officer quickly determined that the man had handed him a bogus California driver’s license under the name “Justin Case.” Not only was it a forged document, but the height and weight of the suspect and the man identified on the license were different. He was much shorter and weighed much less.

The moke had several prior felony arrests, had four guns in his possession (another felony) and had a Seattle Police department badge and duty jacket  and belt.

Waiting for the big one - Canada

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It seems that Canada is not that well prepared - from Yahoo/Canada News:

Government crisis response centre outdated, inefficient and understaffed, audit warns
The federal government's crisis response centre is outdated, understaffed and "inadequate" for co-ordinating emergency situations such as national security threats or natural disasters, a new audit warns.

In 2015, the Government Operations Centre (GOC) was called on to triage more then 5,000 incidents. Of those, more than 500 were deemed to be of national interest, requiring a risk assessment, planning and co-ordinated response, making it a vital nerve centre.

But a Public Safety Canada audit found persistent problems — even after a 2010 review revealed "widespread confusion and uncertainty" about the operation centre's mandate and its ability to fulfil its role.

The latest audit assessed the policies, processes, controls and protocols the GOC uses to respond to and manage emergency events ranging from flooding and industrial accidents to acts of terrorism and cyber events. It was completed in October 2016 and recently published online.

Crap - when we get the Cascadian earthquake, one of the real dangers is the resulting tsunami. Bellingham (and Everett and Seattle) is fortunately situated in the shadow of the Olympic Peninsula so we will not have much of a problem. Vancouver is wide open and low-lying areas will be toast.

FEMA has a lot of really great information online on how to organize emergency operations centers - Canada would do very well by looking at these files. In the USA, it all started after the Loma-Preita earthquake of  1989. None of the responding agencies had any way to communicate with any of the other agencies; they each had their own organization and hierarchy. FEMA was tasked to look at the operating hierarchies, pick the best out of all of them (they borrowed heavily from the US Navy)  and develop a standard Incident Command system.

I have been trained in this and it works very well - it is also constantly being tested with drills, being fine tuned and refined.

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