Report: FBI’s troubled relationship with Spokane area law enforcement
Posted by Arroyoribera on October 28, 2007
Upon reading the entire May 2007 report from the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Justice, one gets a much clearer sense of why Spokane’s inter-agency coordination efforts have gone astray more than once in recent months.
Perhaps this even helps to explain why we continue to await the FBI’s report on Otto Zehm.
In fact, I am guessing it explains the statements by FBI boys to me as far back as summer 2004 regarding their low morale and feelings that they had been unable to get anything right for some time.
In fact, now we know why — despite their best efforts to pull their heads out and to win one for the gipper with their phony gang bust in late September 2007 — the boys from the multi-agency Spokane Gang Enforcement Team (GET) ended up shooting themselves in the foot and winning the 2007 boner award by announcing bogus arrest and weapons confiscation data.
Check this out from page 19 and then from the appendix to the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General’s May 2007 Evaluation and Inspections Report I-2007-004 entitled “Coordination of Investigations by Department of Justice Violent Crime Task Forces“:
In Spokane, the FBI planned to create an FBI Violent Gang Safe Streets Task Force and contacted local law enforcement officers in the fall of 2005. The U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington told the OIG that, as the result of the FBI’s attempt to form a new antigang task force in Spokane, he received many calls from multiple law enforcement sources expressing concerns. Because local law enforcement personnel and resources were limited, the U.S. Attorney told us that he did not want “proven and successful task forces to be robbed of their officers.” An Assistant U.S. Attorney stated that he informed FBI task force officials that they had to coordinate the creation of the new task force and their request for local personnel with the other components and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in accordance with the Deputy Attorney General’s August 2005 memorandum. According to the Assistant U.S. Attorney, FBI task force managers stated that they were not aware of the memorandum. The U.S. Attorney therefore spoke with the components’ Special Agents in Charge and explained that if they were going to create new task forces, they had to be coordinated. Ultimately, the FBI decided not to create a Safe Streets Task Force in Spokane. (from p. 19)
Coordinated Anti-Gang Task Force Efforts in Spokane and Tulsa–Summary of the EOUSA Response. EOUSA stated that notwithstanding the FBI’s initially uncoordinated efforts in Spokane and coordination problems in Tulsa, the U.S. Attorneys in both cities believe that coordination has significantly improved.
OIG Analysis. We accept, but have not independently verified, EOUSA’s report of recent cooperation by the FBI in a local anti-gang task force in Spokane and the resolution of coordination problems in Tulsa. Notwithstanding any recent improvements, during the time period examined in this review we found coordination issues in both cities, and we reported on these issues and made recommendations for improvement. (from appendix)