This post has been edited to allow for the updates from last week until this week – things have changed.
There was an interview with a local reporter in Vegas talking about their Sheriff. The young reporter said that Sheriff Lombardo had made a point to be as frank and transparent as he could since taking control of the department. However, there are now problems with the time line that made the conspiracy nuts have a field day. Worse, the political issues are now coming to the forefront.
The problem the Sheriff has is he let the FBI trot him out to be the spokesman while they “took control” of the investigation and promptly mucked it up. Which is not surprising, considering the political animal the FBI has become.
TCTH has two posts. One is the latest on the time line the police keep managing to get wrong. The other is TCTH just reflecting the frustration of what many feel. Why the police do not tell the truth when it is far better to do so is maddening. Especially here. However, there is a reason for all this, and it’s called politics.
After reviewing the latest press conference by Las Vegas Sheriff Joseph Lombardo a few issues rise to the surface. America doesn’t need tears – America needs answers.
First, on the matter of Lombardo’s defensive act, and anger toward people creating alternate theories to reconcile their official contradictions. It is ridiculous for law enforcement (2 weeks post shooting) to claim they want the public’s help, and yet simultaneously hold press briefings where they refuse to answer questions.
If they want the “alternate theories” to stop – then simply deliver honest and accurate information. It has been two weeks. For the FBI and LVMPD to claim they cannot yet present a valid and reasonable sequence of events in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history is abjectly indefensible. Apparently the internal definition of “public servant” has been lost.
If there are, as continually claimed, NO ADDITIONAL “subjects of interest”, or “additional actors”, in the crime – there is no reasonable excuse for not providing information.
It then becomes further ridiculous for the same sheriff to direct his ire against those who seek information from law enforcement, yet simultaneously claim a desire for transparency and refuse to answer reasonable questions. These mutually exclusive statements and behaviors do not reconcile.
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police leadership are creating a public spotlight of ineptitude and malfeasance upon themselves; no-one else is to blame. LVMPD is doing this to themselves. It has been two weeks since the shooting.
The Sheriff isn’t “doing it to himself” exactly. What has happened is he allowed himself and his department to get swept up into the politics of the FBI.
In a conversation with my ex-partner, who worked with them for long time, I was reminded exactly why it is happening the way it is. First, the FBI furiously guards its self proclaimed reputation of being the premier law enforcement agency in the world. The truth is they are not. Their ability comes more from just being big and having the power of government behind them rather than their street level investigative skills.
In fact, as my friend pointed out, the average patrolman from a mid-sized city will encounter, interview, obtain confessions from and arrest more serious and dangerous felons in one year than some agents do in their entire careers. He added that the FBI profilers spend most of their time reading what other profilers wrote rather than in the street interviewing bad guys. This creates a level of inefficiency that is only covered up by their overwhelming size and power.
Paddock is causing them trouble and it shows. Don’t get me wrong, there are good agents in the field, many former local police. But their abilities are often crippled by the top down bureaucracy of the FBI. Trust me, they don’t do anything their bosses don’t know about ahead of time. It’s all about controlling the narrative.
(On a side note, has anyone asked lately how an FBI agent followed two terrorists he was involved with to the Garland TX shooting and didn’t tell anyone? I know Congress tried and the FBI did the Det Frank Drebin move.)
WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley today is calling on the FBI to explain its advance knowledge and any plan to thwart a 2015 terrorist attack in Garland, Texas. Grassley’s questions follow recent media reports revealing that an undercover FBI agent was not only in communication with the terrorists weeks before the attack, but the agent was also at the scene taking pictures of the terrorists seconds before the shooting began. However, in 2015, FBI Director James Comey indicated that the Bureau was not aware of the perpetrator’s plans to travel to Garland or of any plans to carry out the attack.
According to news reports, an undercover FBI agent had been in communication over social media with one of the terrorists, Elton Simpson, in the weeks leading up to the terrorist attack. In one of the communications with the undercover agent, Simpson shared a link to information about the “Draw Prophet Muhamad Contest,” to which the agent replied, “Tear up Texas.” Simpson replied, “Bro, you don’t have to say that,” and “No need to be direct,” and referenced a terrorist attack in Paris. The day of the attack, the agent was in a car directly behind Simpson and his associate, Nadir Soofi, near a police checkpoint. The agent was taking photos of the terrorists just before the shooting began. A local police officer fatally shot both terrorists.
Despite the communications between the agent and Simpson, as well as court filings and news reports that reveal the agent was present at the scene during the attack, Comey told reporters in the days following the attack that the FBI had no reason to believe that Simpson intended to attack the event and was unaware of any plans to travel to Garland.
In a letter today to Comey, Grassley is seeking details on the circumstances surrounding the FBI’s investigation into Simpson, including when it became aware that the agent was traveling to Garland, whether it suspected Simpson of planning an attack and what plans were in place to intervene.
Comey is scheduled to testify at an FBI oversight hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on May 3.
(Of course Trump fired Comey. Frankly, this would be reason enough. Those people in Garland got lucky ONE Texas officer with ONE gun was better than the two terrorists. Or we’d have another massacre on the nation’s hands.)
My buddy’s advice to the Sheriff would be to make sure his local detectives work the case while the FBI is only in support. That has not happened. I was kidding the other day when I said that there are three agents working on this; one is holding a square peg of reality while two others are taking turns hitting it with sledgehammers trying to drive the peg into the FBI approved round hole!
The Sheriff now knows the cost of the deal he struck with the FBI. He is being destroyed and he knows it. And it is causing him great stress.
The second and probably as powerful political influence is that of the casinos in Vegas. MGM owns the Mandalay. The Mandalay is going to get hit with so many lawsuits that it won’t recover for years. They know it, we know it. In the world of liability, this case is going to sting. You have twenty-two thousand potential victims of something from deaths to gunshot wounds to injuries caused by the chaos to people just suffering from PTSD. The hotel will be crushed.
They have hired PR people and I’m sure every lawyer in the surrounding area to get ready. The casinos are the biggest political player in Vegas. They want to make sure the narrative doesn’t force them to change their procedures. The last thing they need is metal detectors and security guards wanding every gambler, tourist and family that comes to the hotel for a vacation. Imagine going to see some circus or Wayne Newton or some other deal and having to stand in a TSA line!
People make fun of the J Edgar Hoover era. He was corrupted by the power he held, but his agents were different back then. He demanded they be of high character, talented, single (he didn’t want distractions from the job), devoted to the agency and hard working. They carried the standard of the FBI with them everywhere.
However, today’s FBI is not that FBI. Sure politics is involved in anything that has power I get that, but at some point the agency went into a super charged mode. It seems today politics rules everything they do. And that change was accelerated and exposed in the past eight years by Obama. From the Fast and the Furious to the IRS scandal to the mess they made of the investigations of Hasan, Mateen and the rest, the FBI has traded its drive for justice for it protecting its reputation beyond all other things.
Even if their intentions are good when they are trying to do their jobs, or if they are just wrong, the taint remains. Add to this the intentional stymying of FOIA requests made by independent groups, the former director manipulating events to create a special counsel (including lying to Congress) and you can see how when the FBI speaks people just discount their honesty.
Tom Fitton has been on the front lines as the head of Judicial Watch as they file one FOIA lawsuit after another in pursuit of the truth when it comes to Hillary’s emails, Benghazi, Obama unmasking scandal etc. so it’s no surprise that he came out and straight up said he doesn’t trust the FBI as they conduct an investigation into 64-year-old Stephen Paddock.
Which is why the SAC in Vegas made a deal to trot out the Sheriff and make him give the FBI approved statements.
Paddock’s act is known. Paddock’s motivation is said to be a mystery. What is happening is that Paddock has a motive, it’s just not low hanging fruit like Mateen. Which I will remind you the FBI tried to change per Obama. Even though Mateen stated clearly he was an Islamic terrorist pledging his loyalty to ISIS – repeatedly.
Fox had a criminal psychiatrist explain the difference between young and old mass killers. Basically, young people do it for attention and fame. Older killers do not act for attention. They act to make a statement and effect change.
For example, Mateen was an older mature mass killer. He had a statement to make and wanted to effect change in something. He wanted to show America that ISIS could strike inside the nation and he wanted us to stop bombing Syria where we were targeting “his brothers.” Statement/effect.
Hodgkinson targeted Republicans because his side- the Left- convinced him they were all monsters killing old people, stealing money, stripping healthcare away and starving kids and of course kicking puppies. He believed that the only way to stop the Trump/Republican train was to stop the Republicans. He targeted one tenth of the Republican Congress, stalked the site (like Paddock), he researched the target (like Paddock)and had a list of Republicans in his pocket and Scalise’s photo on his computer, rifle in his car. He was planning to kill them all because they were bad (statement) and effect change by locking down Congress in a state of confusion for a year.
(Ignore the Alex Jones Info War introduction. Oddly, this is the only video clip I could find with the interview…hello Google..?)
So what motivated Paddock?
That’s the question that is causing the FBI to push the Sheriff out into the public to me crushed. They don’t know. Or- because we don’t believe them- they do and don’t want to tell us because they think they know better and we can’t handle it.
At this point, the Sheriff’s credibility is suffering, which means the vacuum will be filled with conspiracy.
And it all could have been avoided.