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  1. #41

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    So does the contract allow for the employees to carry weapons?

    Being that this is a navy yard, I guess some contracts might.

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    The shooter was working for an IT company so not in that case. I don't think they contract for security at military installations? I doubt anyone but security is allowed to have weapons.

    The shooter just took them in without anyone knowing apparently. The Post story says they do not have metal detectors and don't search bags; way too many people coming in and out I guess for that to be possible?
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  3. #43
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    My husband and I both work at federal govt buildings (not Navy Yard) and just have to swipe and show our IDs to get in our respective buildings. Only visitors go through metal detectors. If its the same way at Navy Yard, it wouldn't be difficult for an employee to bring a gun in, whether its legal for them to do so or not.

    It's all really sad.

  4. #44
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    When I worked near Metro Center (and therefore the White House among other things) for a non-profit, we had to go through a metal detector. I used to see the cars being checked before they could enter the area around Lafayette Square but I guess it just isn't practical to do that at every government or military location.
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  5. #45

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    I never realized that you weren't allowed to bring pepper spray/mace into Smithsonian buildings until a friend pointed it out. Mainly because bag checks there are so speedy that I've never been reprimanded for having a canister on my keys.
    Sometimes I think I lost something really important to me, and it turns out I already ate it.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    When I worked near Metro Center (and therefore the White House among other things) for a non-profit, we had to go through a metal detector. I used to see the cars being checked before they could enter the area around Lafayette Square but I guess it just isn't practical to do that at every government or military location.
    Yeah I'd be curious to know how it differs by location/agency and wonder if things will get more strict now. To get a govt ID you'll have undergone a background check at a minimum (and beyond for those with additional security clearances) so I always assumed the up front due diligence was done in lieu of daily checks. This guy reportedly has some history with misconduct, so I think one question that will come up is how he got a CAC and security clearance to begin with. I've known people with pretty clean backgrounds where it still took ages to get their clearance. Someone dropped the ball here.
    Last edited by elka_sk8; 09-18-2013 at 02:43 PM.

  7. #47
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    I wonder if there may not be a government-wide rethinking of security clearances for the employees of contractors given this and Edward Snowden?
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  8. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    I wonder if there may not be a government-wide rethinking of security clearances for the employees of contractors given this and Edward Snowden?
    There needs to be, IMO. Unfortunately his usually happens after a crime takes place, but it's not always possible to predict a crime, so it's understandable. We are too trusting as a nation.

  9. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    The shooter was working for an IT company so not in that case. I don't think they contract for security at military installations? I doubt anyone but security is allowed to have weapons.

    The shooter just took them in without anyone knowing apparently. The Post story says they do not have metal detectors and don't search bags; way too many people coming in and out I guess for that to be possible?
    The Yard doesn't have metal detectors and security doesn't search bags most of the time. There have been times when they've done so, but that's usually due to some event that's put military installations on high alert. The Yard is enclosed with security at every entrance. I carpooled into work and, to get in, the members of my carpool all handed their badges over to the driver who then handed them to the guard. The guard looked at each badge to see if the photos matched the people in the car and the badge was current. The guard also checked the windshield decals to see if they were the correct ones and not expired. To get in my building, I needed to scan my badge. I worked on a floor where you had to scan your badge again to get access. Not all floors require this.

    It was difficult watching the news last night when they released the names of seven of the victims. I didn't know one victim by name, but I recognized him immediately because I had seen him so many times. I knew one of the other victims from a project he was involved in.
    Only one member of my carpool still works at NAVSEA; the rest of us have retired (I retired last year). He didn't work in my building but worked in one nearby. He said his building was one of the first to be dismissed and said everyone had to sit down with a police/FBI agent for an interview. He told them he was away from the windows and didn't see anything or anybody suspicious. After his interview he walked across base to the Catering and Conference Center where he was loaded onto a bus "and checked to see if we met the description of the 2nd shooter they thought was out there." The bus took him to Nationals Park where people were given a free Metro ride to wherever they were going. He said he arrived home shortly after 7:00 p.m. and said some people didn't get out until after 11:00 p.m.
    When I'm old, I don't want them to say of me, "She's so charming." I want them to say, "Be careful, I think she's armed."
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  10. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by elka_sk8 View Post
    Yeah I'd be curious to know how it differs by location/agency and wonder if things will get more strict now. To get a govt ID you'll have undergone a background check at a minimum (and beyond for those with additional security clearances) so I always assumed the up front due diligence was done in lieu of daily checks. This guy reportedly has some history with misconduct, so I think one question that will come up is how he got a CAC and security clearance to begin with.
    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    I wonder if there may not be a government-wide rethinking of security clearances for the employees of contractors given this and Edward Snowden?
    Security clearances are one thing, easy access in legally obtaining guns despite psychological issues and several incidents involving very questionable use of guns is another. From an MSNBC story:
    Alexis “had been treated multiple times for psychological issues, including sleep deprivation, anger and paranoia”, NBC News reported. In recent weeks he had been “hearing voices” and was treated by the VA, the AP reported. But he had not been declared mentally unfit by the Navy, a designation which would have led him to lose the security clearance he used to access the Navy Yard.
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  11. #51

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    (((Moto))) It must have been so hard for you to watch this.

    I am surprised that they don't have metal detectors at the Navy yard. I work for a county (in Arizona) and even they have metal detectors for non-employees in the court buildings, main county building, etc. I don't have to go through it because I am an employee. I don't know how they deal with contractors.

    My building only has an unarmed guard at the front desk, so almost anyone can enter the building between work hours (7am-5pm) unchecked. In order to get inside the work area one needs a badge that is to be scanned. When I worked in the private industry, no one could get past the guard station without showing a valid badge. Every visitor had to sign in and write down who he/she was going to see there. It seems many government buildings don't have strict security.

  12. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vash01 View Post
    (((Moto))) My building only has an unarmed guard at the front desk, so almost anyone can enter the building between work hours (7am-5pm) unchecked. In order to get inside the work area one needs a badge that is to be scanned. When I worked in the private industry, no one could get past the guard station without showing a valid badge. Every visitor had to sign in and write down who he/she was going to see there. It seems many government buildings don't have strict security.
    Alexis was not a visitor, but had a valid pass for entry into the grounds. There was an armed guard at the building entrance, who Alexis killed with a gunshot to the head, which was how he gained entry even though armed.
    Lady 2: there isn't anything about me on goooogle, I mean, I must take it off if there is.....
    Lady 3: The google is a terrible thing, I mean I don't want anything on there! (Overheard by millyskate on a London train.)

  13. #53
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    The Holocaust museum in DC had metal detectors and bag check for every visitor and all cars in the adjacent lot are searched before entry. Although a security guard was killed by a maniac a few years ago, without those measures the guy might have gotten to a public space and caused many casualties.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  14. #54
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    He was able to get the weapons on base because they don't check your car (other than the decal) when you go through the check point. The question I have is why in the heck was he allowed to even work on base with the background that he has! I have an agent assistant pass because my kids are Navy dependents and even with my being their Mom the hoops I had to jump through to get it was ridiculous! My Mom is a Army dependent and if my mom goes on base to go to the commissary my sister can't even go into the building without an ID even if she's with my Mom who has an ID. So why is it that security is that tight for the grocery store but not for whomever works on base??

  15. #55
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    The Post reports members of Congress are interested in looking at the process of providing security clearances for employees of contractors.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politi...y.html?hpid=z3

    calls from several members of Congress, including the senator with lead federal oversight over the District of Columbia and federal employees, for a serious examination of how federal agencies and government contractors conduct background checks on potential hires. A Defense Department report to be released Tuesday raised questions about whether the Navy had been properly conducting such checks on government contractors.
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  16. #56
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    Hagel to Order Security Review at Bases

    And there will also be a review of security procedures at military installations.
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  17. #57
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    I work on a military base. There are no bag searches or body searches; car searches are done periodically, usually (but not always) on an announced schedule. AFAIK, the only places on base that have metal detectors are in the unrestricted areas that primarily serve civilians.

    The only people who are allowed to carry guns on the base are the base police force (which is an independent entity staffed by civilians) and the military police, which is a separate entity with a different mission. Otherwise, no one is allowed to have weapons, including military personnel who might carry arms elsewhere.

    There are many different types of passes and standards for obtaining them. I, for example, have a basic contractor pass. To get it, I had to be sponsored by a government agency and have a basic background check. My pass allows me 24/7 access to all areas of the base. I do not have a CAC (computer access card) and therefore cannot enter many of the buildings on base or access any of the base computer systems. Many of my students are just regular college students and are taking classes at the base because of the scheduling or location convenience; they get visitor passes, which means they can only enter the base at specific times and can only go to and from the education center. They get a basic wants-and-warrants and citizenship check; that's it.

    We are all subject to ID checks at the gate and to car searches if there is anything suspicious, but I have always thought that if one of us wanted to get a gun on base, it would be very likely easy to do as long as we were calm and the gun was out of sight. We would not, however, be able to get into a lot of places. But if one of my students (or other students--there are several schools on base, about seven of them in the education center alone--and all are subject to the same rules) wanted to shoot up the education center, I think it would be very easy to do, and I have a school shooting plan of my own for this reason. There is no official plan in the education center.

    My husband also works on base and he has a CAC. To get the CAC, he had to have at least a basic background check and a basic security clearance. This applied both when he was a contractor (which he was for many years) and when he started working as a federal employee. My understanding is that the security clearance check was the same for either job and focused on the threat of revealing secrets--how likely is he to blab? I find it highly unlikely that he would have been given a different security clearance check as a contractor because he did the same job in the same place as a contractor that he does as a fed, which is very common. Many people switch employers without ever changing jobs. I would expect this is why there is concern about whether the checks were being done properly rather than on whether the standards are sufficient. There is a lot of employment incest in government work.

    This is not to say that this is how things work at any other installation. While all installations have to meet DoD standards, there are always variations, depending on the mission. Since I work at a base with a research, development and education mission, there is a lot of non-federal civilian access to the general areas of the base, even if many of the labs are restricted. If I worked on a base that focused on weapons development, the rules would be much stricter.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  18. #58

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    I came home one day and found a card from an FBI agent on my door with a request to call her. My next door neighbor had applied for a job and they were doing a security investigation. The agent asked me numerous questions and we spent probably an hour talking.

    When my clearance was updated several years ago, I had to fill out a form and answer about a million questions even though I'd worked at the same place for years. The form asked for contact information for people not related to me who had known me for a specific period of time. The friends I listed all let me know they'd been grilled extensively (and claimed they'd made up things to make me sound more interesting). One of my coworkers and I would joke that security knew everything about us, including the color of our underwear on a given day and which hand we used to flush the toilet.

    I know of several people who had their security clearance yanked which meant they were out of a job at my agency. You can risk losing it for a number of reasons--basically anything (alcoholism, drug addiction, gambling addiction, bankruptcy, etc.) that could lead to a person's compromising classified information but other things as well. Some years ago, a contractor was escorted out when security tapes revealed that he was the panty pervert who had been hiding lingerie in various locations in our building. He claimed he did it as a joke but I don't think he was laughing when he lost his clearance.

    I am at a loss in understanding how Alexis was able to get a clearance given his history.
    When I'm old, I don't want them to say of me, "She's so charming." I want them to say, "Be careful, I think she's armed."
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  19. #59
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    I work for a defense contractor, and it takes ages to get security clearances through due to all the interviews and background/credit checks they need to do. And people lose them very easily - we have a whole personal problem reporting mechanism we have to follow. I am at a loss too.
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

  20. #60

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moto Guzzi View Post
    I am at a loss in understanding how Alexis was able to get a clearance given his history.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rob View Post
    I work for a defense contractor, and it takes ages to get security clearances through due to all the interviews and background/credit checks they need to do. And people lose them very easily - we have a whole personal problem reporting mechanism we have to follow. I am at a loss too.
    What I heard on NPR this morning was that Alexis had a security clearance from his stint with the Navy, which he did not lose when he was discharged in January 2011. Not sure how much follow-up on more recent history is usually done with former military if this is true. Perhaps it depends on the level of clearance? There seems to have been a number of red flags with his behavior in the past six weeks, but evidently not enough to trigger any action wrt his clearance or is ability to legally purchase a shotgun in Virginia just two days before the shooting.
    Lady 2: there isn't anything about me on goooogle, I mean, I must take it off if there is.....
    Lady 3: The google is a terrible thing, I mean I don't want anything on there! (Overheard by millyskate on a London train.)

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