Maryland man charged for soliciting a minor online

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of West Virginia announced the sentencing for Holden Borten, 25, of Gaithersburg, Maryland, earlier this week.

Borten was originally arrested following an attempted sexual encounter with someone he believed was under the age of 12.

Court documents and statements made claim Borten traveled from Maryland to Berkeley County, West Virginia with expectations of a sexual encounter with a minor in December of 2022.

When Borten arrived at the established location, he was met by law enforcement.

Following the trial, Borten was sentenced to 135 months in a federal prison.

Upon completion of his sentence, Borten will be placed on supervised leave for the rest of his life.

The investigation was led by the West Virginia State Police Internet Crimes Against Children Unit and the FBI.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kimberley Crockett prosecuted the case on behalf of the federal government and U.S. District Judge Gina M. Groh presided.

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Virginia leaders request pause on FBI headquarters relocation

Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine along with nine bipartisan Representatives from Virginia sent a letter to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget requesting the FBI headquarters relocation process be paused.

This will allow the Office of the Inspector General time to properly investigate the site selection process after questions were raised following the recommendation of Greenbelt, Maryland by a panel last month.

In November, lawmakers sent a letter requesting an investigation into significant concerns about the site selection process being affected by political interference and alleged impropriety.

This concern was echoed by Christopher Wray, Director of the FBI.

Virginia politicians have been making a case for the Commonwealth over the last few months citing the diverse and developed workforce, proximity to critical national security facilities, and easy access to transit.

To read the full letter to Director Shalanda Young, click here.

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Gerald Drake sentenced for planting pipe bomb

Gerald Leonard Drake of Winchester was sentenced to 9 years in federal prison for planting a pipe bomb at the Cedar Creek Battlefield in October 2017.

According to a press release from the United States Attorney’s Office Drake was sentenced August 17.

Back in April, Drake pled guilty to the charge and mailing threatening letters with Antifa insignia to organizers, reenactment groups, and news outlets.

During the 153rd Reenactment of the Battle of Cedar Creek in October 2017, a pipe bomb was discovered.

The bomb was considered highly dangerous to FBI experts.

The discovery led to the cancellation and evacuation of the grounds and event.

Before and after that event Drake sent letters threatening violence.

The 64-year-old Drake was a reenactor until he was removed from his unit in 2014.

He did continue to volunteer at the annual Battle of Cedar Creek reenactment event.

Drake admitted to manufacturing the pipe bomb to instill fear and cause harm to those attending the reenactment.

United States Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh commended those responsible for bringing an end to Drake’s threats and people like him fear-mongering at the sentencing.

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Hagerstown man pleads guilty to stalking

Derik Wayne Bowers, age 44, of Hagerstown, Maryland, pled guilty today to one count of stalking.

According to court documents, Bowers harassed and intimidated his ex-girlfriend in Berkeley County following their break-up, sometimes using social media to undermine her online business.

Despite an emergency protection order granted to the victim, Bowers placed more than 800 phone calls to her during a 48-hour period and sent nearly 2,000 text messages in six months.

The FBI investigated the Bowers case. Bowers is facing up to five years in prison.

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WPD and FBI host a violence mitigation session

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A social post from Winchester Police Department (WPD) invite citizens to join Chief John Piper in a virtual training opportunity.

WPD along with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Richmond Office are partnering with faith based leaders and offering a virtual training session on mitigating violence Feb. 10.

This session will bring awareness, conversations and preparedness to mitigate violence that has devastated communities.

Registration for the event must be made by February 8 at this link.

More information on the event is available by contacting the WPD at (540) 662-4131.

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The Toebbe’s federal espionage trial has been rescheduled

The federal espionage trial of Jonathan and Dianna Toebbe has been rescheduled according to the Journal News.

The trial will now begin with jury selection on May 17, 2022 in Martinsburg.

The case was rescheduled to give the U.S. Government more time to review the sensitive information involved.

The couple believed they were selling the information to a foreign government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) videotaped the couple dropping off the information.

The drop off location was near a hiking trail in Jefferson County which is why the case is being held in Martinsburg.

The couple have been housed in the Eastern Regional Jail in Berkeley County since October.

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A Maryland couple arrested in W.VA. for trying to sell sensitive data

ABC radio is reporting that a Maryland couple were arrested on Saturday in Jefferson County West Virginia.

The couple are accused of attempting to sell restricted data concerning the design of nuclear powered warships.

The arrest came after the FBI and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service set up a sting to convince the couple they were selling information to a foreign power.

The arrest came after the couple agreed to pass on the sensitive information.

Jonathan and Diana Toebbe are scheduled to appear in federal court in Martinsburg West Virginia Oct. 12 and are facing possible life in prison for violating the Atomic Energy Act.

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Officer dead, suspect killed in violence outside Pentagon

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By Associated Press | Published Aug. 4, 2021 12:40 p.m.


WASHINGTON (AP) — A Pentagon police officer died after being stabbed Tuesday during a burst of violence at a transit center outside the building, and a suspect was shot by law enforcement and died at the scene.

The Pentagon, the headquarters of the U.S. military, was temporarily placed on lockdown after a man attacked the officer on a bus platform shortly after 10:30 a.m. The ensuing violence, which included a volley of gunshots, resulted in “several casualties,” said Woodrow Kusse, the chief of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, which is responsible for security in the facility.

The deaths of the officer and the suspect were first confirmed by officials who were not authorized to discuss the matter and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The Fairfax County Police Department also tweeted condolences about the officer’s death. Officials said they believe two bystanders were injured.

The suspect was identified by multiple law enforcement officials as Austin William Lanz, 27, of Georgia.

The officer was ambushed by Lanz, who ran at him and stabbed him in the neck, according to two of the law enforcement officials. Responding officers then shot and killed Lanz. Investigators were still trying to determine a motive for the attack and were digging into Lanz’s background, including any potential history of mental illness or any reason he might want to target the Pentagon or police officers.

The officials could not discuss the investigation publicly and spoke to The AP on condition of anonymity.

Lanz had enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in October 2012 but was “administratively separated” less than a month later and never earned the title Marine, the Corps said in a statement.

Lanz was arrested in April in Cobb County, Georgia, on criminal trespassing and burglary charges, according to online court records. The same day, a separate criminal case was filed against Lanz with six additional charges, including two counts of aggravated battery on police, a count of making a terrorist threat and a charge for rioting in a penal institution, the records show.

A judge reduced his bond in May to $30,000 and released him, imposing some conditions, including that he not ingest illegal drugs and that he undergo a mental health evaluation. The charges against him were still listed as pending. A spokesman for the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that Lanz had been previously held at the agency’s detention center but referred all other questions to the FBI’s field office in Washington.

An attorney who represented Lanz in the Georgia cases didn’t immediately respond to a phone message and email seeking comment, and messages left with family members at Lanz’s home in the Atlanta suburb of Acworth, Georgia, were not immediately returned.

Tuesday’s attack on a busy stretch of the Washington area’s transportation system jangled the nerves of a region already primed to be on high alert for violence and potential intruders outside federal government buildings, particularly following the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.

At a Pentagon news conference, Kusse declined to confirm that the officer had been killed or provide even basic information about how the violence had unfolded or how many might be dead. He would only say that an officer had been attacked and that “gunfire was exchanged.”

Kusse and other officials declined to rule out terrorism or provide any other potential motive. But Kusse said the Pentagon complex was secure and “we are not actively looking for another suspect at this time.” He said the FBI was leading the investigation.

“I can’t compromise the ongoing investigation,” Kusse said.

The FBI confirmed only that it was investigating and there was “no ongoing threat to the public” but declined to offer details or a possible motive.

Later Tuesday, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency issued a statement confirming the loss of the officer, and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin expressed his condolences and said flags at the Pentagon will be flown at half-staff.

“This fallen officer died in the line of duty, helping protect the tens of thousands of people who work in — and who visit — the Pentagon on a daily basis,” Austin said in a statement. “This tragic death today is a stark reminder of the dangers they face and the sacrifices they make. We are forever grateful for that service and the courage with which it is rendered.”

Tuesday’s violence occurred on a Metro bus platform that is part of the Pentagon Transit Center, a hub for subway and bus lines. The station is steps from the Pentagon building, which is in Arlington County, Virginia, just across the Potomac River from Washington.

An Associated Press reporter near the building heard multiple gunshots, then a pause, then at least one additional shot. Another AP journalist heard police yelling “shooter.”

A Pentagon announcement said the facility was on lockdown, but that was lifted after noon, except for the area around the crime scene.

Austin and Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, were at the White House meeting with President Joe Biden at the time of the shooting. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Austin returned to the building and went to the Pentagon police operations center to speak to the officers there.

It was not immediately clear whether any additional security measures might be instituted in the area.

In 2010, two officers with the Pentagon Force Protection Agency were wounded when a gunman approached them at a security screening area. The officers, who survived, returned fire, fatally wounding the gunman, identified as John Patrick Bedell.


Associated Press writers Colleen Long and Michael Biesecker in Washington and Matthew Barakat and Sagar Meghani in Arlington, Va., contributed to this report.

(All contents © copyright 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved)

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FBI: Man shot outside CIA headquarters has died

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By Associated Press | Published May 5, 2021 7:10 a.m.

McLEAN, Va. (AP) — An armed man who was shot outside CIA headquarters in Virginia has died, the FBI said Tuesday.

At least one FBI agent opened fire on the unidentified man Monday evening after he “emerged from his vehicle with a weapon,” the FBI said in a statement. The man died from his wounds after he was taken to a hospital, according to the FBI.

The FBI said it is reviewing the incident.

“The FBI reviews every shooting incident involving an FBI special agent. The review will carefully examine the circumstances of the shooting and collect all relevant evidence from the scene,” Tuesday’s statement says.

The FBI did not provide any additional details on the shooting.

(All contents © copyright 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved)

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Winchester man faces charges in Capitol breach

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Edward Hemenway of East Cork Street Winchester has been charged with entering and disorderly conduct, parading, demonstrating and picketing in a restricted Capitol building.

Hemenway faces those and other charges after confessing that he and his cousin Robert L. Bauer, of Cave City Kentucky knowingly entered a restricted building, the Nation’s Capitol.

In separate interviews with the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) both Bauer and Hemenway admitted they walked down Pennsylvania Avenue with the crowd on Jan. 6.

When they reached the Capitol Bauer’s wife Jenny left the group but Bauer and Hemenway went in despite seeing what Hemenway described as a giant Do Not Enter Sign.

Pictures of the two men inside the building were found on Bauer’s phone which was confiscated by the FBI.

If convicted Hemenway faces up to a year in prison on each charge.

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