| NEWS of the Day - August 28, 2012
|on some issues of interest to the community policing and neighborhood activist across the country
EDITOR'S NOTE: The following group of articles from local newspapers and other sources constitutes but a small percentage of the information available to the community policing and neighborhood activist public. It is by no means meant to cover every possible issue of interest, nor is it meant to convey any particular point of view ...
We present this simply as a convenience to our readership ...
From Google News
Prosecutors: 'Anarchist' group of U.S. soldiers aimed to overthrow government
by the CNN Wire Staff
A U.S. soldier laid out an elaborate plot by a group of active and former military members to overthrow the government, telling a southeast Georgia court Monday that he was part of what prosecutors called an "an anarchist group and militia."
Dressed in his Army uniform, Pfc. Michael Burnett spoke in a Long County court about the group of Army soldiers and its role in the December deaths of a former soldier Michael Roark and his teenage girlfriend Tiffany York. Roark, he said, was killed because he allegedly took money from the group and planned to leave.
"I don't know how it got to the point where two people got murdered," Burnett said in court.
Burnett talked about how he and three others accused -- Pvt. Isaac Aguigui, Sgt. Anthony Peden and Pvt. Christopher Salmon -- had first begun getting together "just going out shooting guns, just guy stuff."
"And then Aguigui introduced me to 'the manuscript,' that's what he called it, a book about true patriots," the soldier said.
The four men became part of a group that aimed "to give the government back to the people," according to Burnett, who admitted that revolution was its goal. They called it FEAR -- Forever Enduring Always Ready, and spent thousands buying guns and bomb parts.
The government needed a change, Burnett told the court. "I thought we were the people who would be able to change it."
Assistant District Attorney Isabel Pauley said it was "unknown" how many others belonged to the group. She identified Aguigui as the leader of what she described as "an anarchist group and militia" that included active and former troops.
"Defendant Aguigui actively recruited new members at Fort Stewart and targeted soldiers who were in trouble or disillusioned," she said.
At the time of their arrest, group members had plotted a number of "acts of domestic terror," the prosecutor said.
These included "forcibly taking over the ammo control point of Fort Stewart to take the post, bombing vehicles of local and state judicial and political figureheads and federal representatives to include the local department of homeland security, (and plotting) to bomb the fountain at Forsyth Park in Savannah."
Days before he died, Roark had been discharged from the army, according to Pauley.
Roark and his 17-year-old girlfriend were killed because Aguigui felt the couple was "a loose end," said Burnett.
"Sir, if I could have stopped this from happening, I would have," the soldier told the judge about the couple's killings.
Burnett admitted being at the scene of the crime, including watching as a soldier "checked (York's) pulse and then shot her again."
York's sister, Tiffany, told CNN affiliate WTOC, she hoped York "didn't have to beg, or suffer."
As part of an agreement with prosecutors, Burnett pleaded guilty to manslaughter -- instead of murder, thus avoiding a possible death sentence -- and other charges. He also agreed to testify against the three other soldiers accused in the case.
All four soldiers had also been charged by the military. But as their case proceeded through the civilian courts, the Army dismissed its charges, according to Fort Stewart spokesman Kevin Larson.
The military's Criminal Investigative Division (CID) probe is still ongoing, though it is not believed there are any "unknown subjects" -- or people besides those four men -- tied to these crimes, Larson said.
All four implicated soldiers are active members of the U.S. Army, the spokesman added.
Larson, the military spokesman, insisted in his statement Monday that Fort Stewart and its affiliated Hunter Army Airfield "does not have a gang or militia problem."
"Any suspicions of gang activity are actively investigated by CID, (which) recognizes the obvious concerns with the combination of gangs and military-type training," said Larson. "That is why CID monitors and investigates gang and extremist group association with criminal acts in the Army so closely. We believe the reason we are able to maintain a low gang criminal threat status is because of the awareness of and focus on the threat."
Located in southeast Georgia about 40 miles southwest of Savannah, Fort Stewart is home to the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division.
Tens of thousands of troops, their dependents, civilian personnel and contractors live and work on the base, which encompasses 280,000 acres and includes parts of five counties including Long County, which has about 14,500 residents. The Hunter Army Airfield is located in Savannah but officially part of the larger Fort Stewart complex.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks what it characterizes as "hate groups" nationwide, spoke to Aguigui's father Monday night.
"I served my country for 20 years and I honor that, take pride in that," Ed Aguigui told the center. " I don't know what my son's views are, and where they came from."
13th Annual Tredyffrin Township Citizens Police Academy
Held, 7- 9:30 p.m. every Thursday for 12 weeks beginning Sept. 27 at the Township Building, 1100 DuPortail Road
If interested contact the Director of Community Policing, Officer Larry Meoli at 610-408-3654 or e-mail him at (Lmeoli@tredyffrin.org). You may also stop by and pick up an application or view the information on our web page at www.tredyffrin.org/police/crime/cpa.aspx . Deadline for applications is September 17, 2012. This academy is being offered free of charge.
The program is designed to increase understanding between citizens and police officers through training and open communications. You are not being trained as a police officer.
The academy is an excellent program to bring the community and police department together through mutual understanding. By participating in this program citizens promote community involvement - which is the most powerful force any law enforcement agency has in the fight against crime.
Below is an outline of our program which begins on Aug. 27 and ends with a Graduation Ceremony on Jan. 3, 2013
|Introduction/ Orientation & Tour
Patrol Procedures, Officer Safety& Vehicle Stops
Domestic Violence and Constitution
Personal Safety Presentation
CPR/AED Certification (Fee $35-not mandatory to attend)
Berwyn Fire Company Tour and Demonstration
|Criminal Investigation/Crime Scenes
Special Weapons and Tactics
Community Programs/Townwatch/Police Association
Tour 911 Center
Traffic Squad/Accident Investigations
Thank you for your continued support,
Anthony Giaimo, III
Superintendent of Police
Rome police unveil new community impact unit
by ROCCO LaDUCA
A “groundbreaking” Rome policing unit will be taking to the streets in an aggressive effort to strategically crack down on the city's quality-of-life issues and other criminal activity.
Known as the Community Impact Unit, four city patrol officers and several detectives will build partnerships with Rome's business owners, residents and visitors to pro-actively address crime and disorder problems in the community before they become persistent scourges.
These reassigned officers will heavily saturate the foot-trafficked areas of Rome through intensive patrols on foot and bicycle, Rome police Chief Kevin Beach and Mayor Joseph Fusco said.
“CIU officers patrolling through these means will not merely be responding to incidents, but rather engaging Rome's citizens on an informal basis to learn of and address chronic crime issues throughout the city,” Beach said.
Fusco and Beach will host a press conference at Rome City Hall Monday afternoon to unveil this new policing program, which is scheduled to begin its first patrols at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 4.
Among the quality-of-life issues the unit will address includes disorderly conduct, littering, loitering, public intoxication and street narcotics, officials said. However, unit members will also confront crime in residential neighborhoods plagued by persistent burglaries and violations occurring within abandoned homes and lots.
This unit will work closely with the city's codes officers and other departments to tackle some of these issues that have been known to draw other criminal activity.
“Officers will be distributing direct contact information to citizens who wish to discuss their concerns of crime on an immediate and personalized level,” Beach said.
The Community Impact Unit's creation follows an 18-month intensive study of policing operations in Rome by Peter W. Maher, a senior at Hamilton College in Clinton. Maher completed this study at the end of a two-year internship with the Rome police Detective Division.
Maher will be hitting the streets as well, working with CIU officers and renowned policing experts to evaluate and track crime problems that most concern Rome citizens, Beach said.
This data gathering will then allow officers to constantly use real-time intelligence to adjust their patrol efforts “to focus on smaller problems that progressively escalate into much larger and violent ones,” Maher said.
“The Rome Police Department is proud to lead Oneida County in data and research-driven, pro-active, problem-oriented policing and honored to be the first law enforcement agency to spearhead this community-based effort in Central New York,” Beach said.
From the Department of Homeland Security
Expanding our "If You See Something, Say Something™" Message to Keep Fans Safe
This morning, I joined Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber, National Basketball Association Commissioner David Stern, and representatives from Major League Baseball, National Football League, National Hockey League, as well as New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chief Operating Officer Nuria Fernandez and New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jerry Houer to unveil a new sports Public Service Announcement (PSA) as part of the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) "If You See Something, Say Something(tm)" public awareness campaign.
Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, the National Basketball Association, the National Football League and the National Hockey League are joining together for the first time to help DHS deliver an important message to their millions of fans: if you see something that doesn't look right, report it to appropriate authorities.
The PSA will feature referees and umpires from baseball, soccer, basketball, football and hockey. It encourages everyone to be vigilant for things that don't seem right - an unattended bag or package, a vehicle that seems out of place or suspicious behavior or activity. Starting this fall, fans will see the new PSA in stadiums nationwide. You can also view the PSA on our redesigned website here.
At DHS, we believe that homeland security begins with hometown security. Security is a shared responsibility, and each citizen has a role to play in identifying and reporting suspicious activities.
So, while you're watching the game, remember - if you see something, say something.
Public and Private Sector Experts Gather in Atlanta to Strengthen Partnerships and Address Cyber Threats
Partnerships are required across all levels of government, the private sector and internationally to share information about emerging cybersecurity threats and how to stop them, and coordinate mitigation efforts in response to cyber incidents.
Last week, cybersecurity experts from the public and the private sector gathered in Atlanta for the eighth annual Government Forum of Incident Response and Cybersecurity Teams (GFIRST). More than 1,600 cybersecurity professionals from various federal agencies, state and local governments, and private businesses discussed a range of cyber-related issues from cyber intelligence to social networking. Participants had the opportunity to hear from some of the biggest names in the business, including Executive Chairman of RSA Art Coviello and founder of Black Hat and DEFCON Jeff Moss.
Representatives of DHS' United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) demonstrated both their current capabilities and future initiatives, including the development of the Advanced Malware Analysis Center, the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program and Cloud Service Provider Cyber Incident Response program, which help government and private sector entities respond to cyber incidents. The event also provides DHS with the opportunity to broaden the skill set (in the company of some of our top cybersecurity minds) necessary to keep pace with the ever-changing cyber landscape.
The annual GFIRST provides a great opportunity for government and private sector leaders to convene and evaluate the evolving cyber threats we deal with on a daily basis and the necessity of a team approach to cyber incident response. Director of Research at the SANS Institute Alan Paller noted at GFIRST that as we are busy addressing and mitigating current threats, others are continuously coming to our awareness. That is why forums like GFIRST where we can share experiences and best practices are absolutely critical to building stronger partnerships.
We're confronting some new realities in cyberspace and we need some new thinking and new energy. Our message begins with a simple concept: to ensure cybersecurity for all of us, each of us must play our part. We know it only takes a single infected computer to potentially infect thousands and perhaps millions of others. I hope that this gathering and others reaffirm our collective commitment to ACT – Achieve Cybersecurity Together.