• South African World Cup preparations called into question after 15 injured in stampede

    Worries about personal safety deterred soccer fans from going to South Africa, and only 223,000 of them have decided to brave the trip (the organizers of the 2010 World Cup hoped that about 1.2 to 1.5 million would come); stuck with hundreds of thousands of unsold tickets, FIFA distributed them for free to local fans to avoid the embarrassment of teams playing in empty stadiums; to save money on printing the free tickets, FIFA distributed Xerox copies of tickets — somehow missing the fact that this made it easy for fans to photocopy their own extra tickets; the first result was a stampede in a friendly, pre-tournament game; organizers are now worried about what will happen when the tournament begins this Friday

  • Handgun defense against a wall

    One of the most dangerous tasks law enforcement personnel faces is disarming a suspect armed with a handgun; officers must remember that action is faster than reaction, and should thus take the initiative — and maintain it; the first part of any handgun defense is a redirection of the muzzle; typically, this is accomplished by one of two ways: redirecting the handgun itself, or physically moving out of the line of fire while controlling the muzzle direction; Israeli Combat System (ICS) stipulates a combination of muzzle redirection and a body defense done simultaneously

  • South Africa says visitors to World Cup will be safe

    The World Cup tournament will not give South Africa the economic bounce it was hoping for; the organizers were hoping for between 1.2 and 1.5 million visitors, but only 250,000 foreign soccer fans decided to make the trip; at least, the organizers say, the visitors will be safe; South Africa leads the world in all categories of violent crime (the murder rate in the country is eight times higher than that of the United States), but South Africa has poured $180 million into World Cup security preparations, including $89 million on equipment such as helicopters, water cannons, patrol vehicles, and body armor

  • Chinese government forbids schools from charging security fees

    China has been witnessing an alarming — and painful — trend of deadly attacks on schools and kindergartens across the country; in five such attacks in the last two months, 17 children were killed and more than 50 wounded; schools began to install CCTVs and intrusion detectors and hire guards — but many told parents that they would have to pay for this additional security; the Chinese government has now banned the practice, and told schools to refund monies already paid

  • Carbon Motors’ revolutionary E7 police car already has 14,000 reservations

    Carbon Motors offers law enforcement what it describes as the first purpose-built police interceptor; the company says that it already has 14,000 orders for the new cruiser — even though the price for the car has not yet been set; the company says that with the help of more than 3,500 U.S. law enforcement professionals from all fifty States representing the local, state, and federal levels, it wrote the groundbreaking specifications for such a vehicle

  • Hi-tech, wireless policing works

    There are 640,000 people living in Baltimore, and the Baltimore Police Department has 3,000 officers to protect them; to make the officers more mobile and flexible, the department equipped them with BlackBerry smartphones; the department toughened the smartphones, added an extra battery, and built clever software that lets officers use the phones for everything they once could do only with a laptop or via a dispatcher

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  • Visiting Colombian, Egyptian national soccer teams robbed in South Africa

    Criminals in South Africa do not wait for the World Cup tournament to begin to rob visiting soccer teams: last Monday, two hotel employees stole $3,000 from members of the Colombian national team; the Colombian team was staying at the five-star Hyde Park Southern Sun Hotel, in northern Johannesburg, ahead of a friendly game against the South African national team; the incident is reminiscent of a robbery last June: during the Confederations Cup, $2,400 was stolen from several players from the Egyptian soccer team at Johannesburg’s Wanderers Protea Hotel

  • U.S. lawmakers push for ID to buy prepaid cell phones

    Two senators propose a bill which would make it easier to identify buyers of prepaid cell phones and thus make it more difficult for criminal and terror suspects to avoid detection; buyers of the prepaid cell phones would have to produce identification at the time of purchase and phone companies would have to keep that information on file

  • Death threats prompt increased security for Phoenix mayor

    Mayor Phil Gordon has been an outspoken critic of the recent Arizona anti-illegal immigration law which allow law enforcement personnel to approach individuals and ask them to prove their legal status in the united States; the mayor has received more than 5,000 threats — many of them death threats, some graphic in detail — from supporters of the law, and the police has now placed him under 24-hour protection

  • Private security gets big play at World Cup

    Rampant crime and corrupt and ineffective police force have created a huge private security sector in South Africa; with trained bodyguards available for around 300 Euros a day, those who can afford it are turning to the country’s parallel private army for protection; there are more than 4,700 registered security firms in South Africa, employing more than 300,000 people to guard homes and businesses — and even police stations; this private security army is gearing up to protect the World Cup

  • Louisiana legislator OK bill to strengthen penalties for virtual map crimes

    Louisiana legislators approve a bill to toughen penalties for crimes committed with the aid of Internet-generated “virtual maps,” including acts of terrorism; bill defines a “virtual street-level map” as one that is available on the Internet and can generate the location or picture of a home or building by entering the address of the structure or an individual’s name on a Web site

  • Private security companies flourish

    Private security is a booming business in Harris County, Texas; private security experts say guards are better trained, but the job is more dangerous than ever. They often confront the same violent suspects as police but without advanced training and enforcement power

  • London police train private security guards to report suspicious behavior

    Private security guards in London are trained by the police to be on the look out for — and report — suspicious behavior; this behavior includes individuals making sketches near buildings, taking photographs and recording video footage, even if they appear to be legitimate tourists; stateside, LAPD. officers are already required to fill out a suspicious activity report when they observe one of more than forty different types of behavior; categories include taking photographs or video “with no apparent aesthetic value”

  • FBI details sharp increase in death threats against lawmakers

    Threats against U.S. lawmakers increase dramatically in 2009; each threat case is different, but the FBI says there are some common characteristics; the suspects are mostly men who own guns, and several had been treated for mental illness; most of the suspects had just undergone some kind of major life stress, such as illness or the loss of a job

  • A good nose for explosives

    There is a new breed of explosive-sniffing dogs: vapor—wake dogs; genetically bred and trained by Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, vapor-wake dogs are taught to detect the scent plume of air that comes wafting off a person, such as a suicide bomber, wearing an explosive device