Seventy Fed Agencies with Armed Divisions

From Fox News:

Armed EPA raid in Alaska sheds light on 70 fed agencies with armed divisions

The recent uproar over armed EPA agents descending on a tiny Alaska mining town is shedding light on the fact that 40 federal agencies – including nearly a dozen typically not associated with law enforcement — have armed divisions.

The agencies employ about 120,000 full-time officers authorized to carry guns and make arrests, according to a June 2012 Justice Department report.

Though most Americans know agents within the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Federal Bureau of Prisons carry guns, agencies such as the Library of Congress and Federal Reserve Board employing armed officers might come as a surprise.

The incident that sparked the renewed interest and concern occurred in late August when a team of armed federal and state officials descended on the tiny Alaska gold mining town of Chicken, Alaska.

The Environmental Protection Agency, whose armed agents in full body armor participated, acknowledged taking part in the Alaska Environmental Crimes Task Force investigation, which it said was conducted to look for possible violations of the Clean Water Act.

However, EPA officials denied the operation was a “raid” and didn’t address speculation about whether it was connected to possible human and drug trafficking.

“Imagine coming up to your diggings, only to see agents swarming over it like ants, wearing full body armor, with jackets that say “POLICE” emblazoned on them, and all packing side arms,” gold miner C.R. Hammond told the Alaska Dispatch.

The other federal agencies participating in the operation were the FBI, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Coast Guard, the National Oceanic and the Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Park Service.

The FBI, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management and Park Service are among 24 federal agencies employing more than 250 full-time armed officers with arrest authority, according the federal report, which is based on the 2008 Census of Federal Law Enforcement Officers.

The other 16 agencies have less than 250 officers and include NOAA as well as the Library of Congress, the Federal Reserve Board and the National Institutes of Health.

The number of federal department with armed personnel climbs to 73 when adding in the 33 offices of inspector general, the government watchdogs for agencies as large as the Postal Service to the Government Printing Office, whose IG has only five full-time officers.

The EPA defended its use of armed officers, after the Alaska incident.

“Environmental law enforcement, like other forms of law enforcement, always involves the potential for physical, even armed, confrontation,” the agency said.

But Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell has already ordered an investigation, saying “This level of intrusion and intimidation of Alaskans is absolutely unacceptable.”

In addition, Alaska Sens. Lisa Murkowski, Republican, and Mark Begich, Democrat, have inquired about the incident.

Murkowski said purported concerns about rampant drug and human trafficking in the area sounded “wholly concocted” to her.

“This seems to have been a heavy-handed and heavy-armor approach. Why was it so confrontational? The EPA really didn’t have any good answers for this,” she told the newspaper.

This is not the first time armed EPA guards have been accused of intimidating behavior.

In May 2012, North Carolina resident Larry Keller was visited by armed EPA agents after sending an email to Al Armendariz, the regional administrator who was video-taped saying his enforcement strategy was to “crucify” executives from big oil and gas companies.

“The charter of the EPA is to protect the environment and public, not to act as a quasi federal police department,” Keller said after the brief but tense exchange with agents about whether the missive might seem suspicious.

The Department of Homeland Security employs nearly half of all federal officers, through Customs and Border Protection and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, the most recent statistics show. The statistics also show the number of CBP officers increased by 33 percent from 2004 to 2008. The number for ICE was 20 percent over the same period.

Meanwhile, the four largest Interior Department agencies employed fewer officers during that time, including the Park Police, which employed 547 officers in 2008, 11 percent less than four years earlier, according to the 2012 report.

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Wow. Talk about overkill. In this incident, we have seven agencies involved in an investigation of violations to the Clean Water Act, but supposedly there was the possibility of drug and human trafficking, so they bring out the full body armor and storm the mine. But it wasn’t ‘a raid’.

The first question that comes to mind is, what does the EPA have to do with a drug & human trafficking investigation?  For the EPA to address a violation of the Clean Water Act in full body armor is overkill to say the least. The fact that there are over 70 agencies in our government is ludicrous and that they are armed is also overkill.

Following is a list of the agencies that have armed divisions with 250 or more employees. There are more, but these are the largest ones. This data comes from a 2012 Justice Department report.

Agency                                   Number of full-time officers

U.S. Customs and Border Protection –  36,863

Federal Bureau of Prisons – 16,835

Federal Bureau of Investigation – 12,760

Immigration and Customs Enforcement – 12,446

U.S. Secret Service – 5,213

Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts* – 4,696

Drug Enforcement Administration – 4,308

U.S. Marshals Service – 3,313

Veterans Health Administration – 3,128

IRS, Criminal Investigation – 2,636

Bureau of ATF and Explosives – 2,541

U.S. Postal Inspection Service – 2,288

U.S. Capitol Police  – 1,637

National Park Service – Rangers – 1,404

Bureau of Diplomatic Security – 1,049

Pentagon Force Protection Agency – 725

U.S. Forest Service – 644

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – 598

National Park Service – U.S. Park Police – 547

National Nuclear Security Administration – 363

U.S. Mint Police – 316

Amtrak Police – 305

Bureau of Indian Affairs – 277

Bureau of Land Management – 255

*Limited to federal probation officers employed in federal judicial districts that allow officers to carry firearms.

It appears that Obama has established that militia he said we needed, and as always, it’s for our safety.

~Kathy

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22 Responses to Seventy Fed Agencies with Armed Divisions

  1. Hardnox says:

    “Veterans Health Administration – 3,128, Bureau of Indian Affairs – 277” – What????

    I can see the need for weapons for the others.. for the most part, sorta kinda, but not these.

    What about the ObamaCorps? Did they arm them yet, or are they still being trained?

    The increased militarization of police overall is disturbing. My LEO pals don’t even like it.

    • Kathy says:

      I wondered about some of those numbers too – why do they need so many guns for a handful of Indians and vets who just want a little help? The ObamaCorps has probably been armed up for awhile without a word said.

  2. LT Bill Safford says:

    How about something interesting in the Obama “Healthcare Bill”? HR 3590 AS Section 5210:

    H.R.3590
    Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Amendment in Senate – AS)

    SEC. 5210. ESTABLISHING A READY RESERVE CORPS.

    Section 203 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 204) is amended to read as follows:

    SEC. 203. COMMISSIONED CORPS AND READY RESERVE CORPS.

    (a) Establishment-

    (1) IN GENERAL- There shall be in the Service a commissioned Regular Corps and a Ready Reserve Corps for service in time of national emergency.

    (2) REQUIREMENT- All commissioned officers shall be citizens of the United States and shall be appointed without regard to the civil-service laws and compensated without regard to the Classification Act of 1923, as amended.

    This continues for a number of more paragraphs – but seems an awful lot like the Sturmabteilung to me………..

    • Kathy says:

      Thanks, that’s good information to know. It seems like there’s a lot of that ‘without regard’ stuff in there. This administration has been really good at that.

  3. Mrs AL says:

    And I have mine, Kathy. One for every occasion, I might add.

  4. This whole thing is an incitement to paranoia~!

    • upaces88 says:

      From what I understand of History. “Paranoia is being afraid of something that has never happened.”
      This has happened two times before.
      1776 and the Civil War.
      He has every reason to be fearful…HE IS DELIBERATELY CAUSING IT and WANTS a showdown.
      Following the MASSIVE FAILURE of the Million Man Muslim March in D.C. vs. The Bikers…the man SHOULD BE VERY AFRAID.
      He does NOT understand that those who really love our country will defend Her;
      and it will be those over the age of 40 and up into their 60’s.

      • Don’t Exclude the old codgers in their 8th decade, plus. I still have a steady hand, and eyes to see, and a brain to think with,,, ( I think ).
        And WE are the ones who UNDERSTOOD the World Of Norman Rockwell.
        As I have written in other venues, WE are the Forerunners, Guides and Guardians.
        We take our “Responsibility” seriously.

        • upaces88 says:

          Please believe me, I do know. It seems that the older , like us…are taking this much more seriously than the younger people.
          Their Hearts are TRUE and their Souls Strong.

      • Kathy says:

        But he wants us to start it, so they’re the ones who are ‘justified.’

    • Kathy says:

      It’s not paranoia if they’re really after you. Thank God for the old codgers who have a much better understanding of what’s going on than the young-uns do.

  5. upaces88 says:

    This is toxic, evil insanity on the part of the dirt-ball in our WH. (I did clean up what I was thinking…wouldn’t want to get kicked off of here LOL.

  6. Clyde says:

    Why am I thinking booby traps ? Some kicks to the ass are in order here. First one to Bush, for getting this “homeland security” monstrosity off the ground, and second one to the spineless sobs who make up CONgress. Although, since the second coming of Hitler, the paranoia factor of this mess called federal government seems to have cornered the market on paranoia.

  7. upaces88U says:

    Sometimes, I am just a little slow on the “up-take.”
    9/11 WAS the beginning….we all know what happened…it was “deliberate” to get the ball rolling; and brought us to this point!

  8. western guy says:

    NOAA has guns??, now why in the HELL do weather and water people have guns?, Are they going to arrest el nino for pimping and la nina for being pimped?, Are they going to pull the jet stream over for speeding and clap the cuffs on?, Will they be protecting us all from global unauthorized climate change? Maybe arrest those nasty mudslides for speeding down hill, dirtying the rivers and confine them to a more sedentary lifestyle?….I mean what the hell, man?

    • Kathy says:

      And face problems head on??? Oh hell, no. But you, lowly person, don’t go pan for gold and pee in the river. The EPA is watching you from their SWAT tent.

  9. Buck says:

    I’m back from the shadows again,
    Out where an Injun’s your friend,
    Where the skys are always clean,
    And you can pee right in the stream,
    I’m back from the shadows again.

    Firesign Theater circa 1970

  10. myfoxmystere says:

    The whackjobs from CARB have gone north to Alaska! One would expect this in California, but now Alaska…oh my! CARB = California Air Resources Board.

  11. pepperhawk says:

    Kathy,

    Great report and this is something that’s been bothering me for some time, this arming of most of our federal agencies. Even the Social Security Administration is armed and one wonder what for.

    We’re living in a police state right now and I don’t think a lot of the younger people as someone else mentioned are taking note of it. We older folks know better and we know this is just plain WRONG.

    This particular incident in Alaska was IMHO a mere intimidation tactic because Alaska has thwarted the feds on a lot of things. The EPA, along with many of these agencies have no business being armed and making raids.

    • Kathy says:

      Thanks, Pepperhawk, what seems like overkill to us makes perfect sense to O. Like Hitler, he’s lining up his loyal soldiers, who love the power and the new toys.