WDW received the following in an email from Dan Bongino. Dan served for over a decade in the United States Secret Service as a special agent and owns a number of small businesses in Maryland with his wife Paula.
There are simply no words appropriate to describe the tragedy at Sandy Hook. As a father to two young daughters I can’t help but ask, “What if it were my daughters?” I am sending you this email because there are experiences and lessons I learned while working with the Secret Service that may help assist in preventing another tragedy.
In 2002, the Secret Service, in conjunction with the Department of Education, conducted a research study on school shooting incidents called the Safe School Initiative. The study sought information about the shooters’ pre-attack behaviors and communications. Their stated goal was to “identify information about a school shooting that may be identifiable or noticeable before the shooting occurs, to help inform efforts to prevent school-based attacks.” Although this email is not an appropriate forum for an exhaustive list of their conclusions I have highlighted a few of the study’s main conclusions below with a link to the complete report at the bottom.
According to the Secret Service website, the study highlights include the following:
- School shootings are rarely impulsive acts. Rather, they are typically thought out and planned out in advance. In addition, prior to most shootings other children knew the shooting was to occur – but did not alert an adult.
- Very few of the attackers, however, ever directed threats to their targets before the attack.
- The study findings also revealed that there is no “profile” of a school shooter; instead, the students who carried out the attacks differed from one another in numerous ways.
- Almost every attacker had engaged in behavior before the shooting that seriously concerned at least one adult – and for many, had concerned three or more different adults.
You can view the report at http://www.secretservice.gov/
WDW thanks former Secret Service Agent Bongino for his insights and making us aware of the special report.
ABOUT DANIEL BONGINO
Daniel Bongino began his career with the NYPD in 1995 as a Police Cadet while attending The City University of New York full time. During his tenure in the Cadet program, Daniel was a member of the distinguished pattern identification unit which specialized in the identification and apprehension of serial criminals.
Daniel proudly joined the ranks of the U.S. Secret Service in 1999 as a Special Agent where he graduated the Secret Service training academy with honors. Beginning his career in the New York Field Office, he was assigned to investigate federal crimes, including but not limited to, computer crimes, bank fraud, credit card fraud, protective intelligence and counterfeiting. His early career was marked by a number of investigative successes. Although the details of his signature investigation are still for official use only, it involved over 300 million dollars in potential financial fraud and a nexus to international terrorism. This joint investigation in cooperation with the FBI, IRS, SSA and a number of local police agencies, was responsible for collapsing a major international fraud ring. The investigation earned Daniel the Department of Justice recognition award, along with other agency specific awards, for excellence in federal investigations.
Daniel left the New York Field Office in 2002 to become an instructor at the Secret Service Training Academy in Beltsville, Maryland. He was the project manager for the re-design of the investigative tactics training program which he subsequently taught to incoming trainees. Daniel was awarded a number of commendations for his work in researching and re-designing the investigative curriculum to reflect current trends in federal crime.
In 2006, Daniel entered into duty on the elite Presidential Protection Division in the administration of President George W. Bush, graduating at the top of his class in the difficult detail training program. Daniel distinguished himself early by becoming one of the earliest tenured Special Agents to be given responsibility for an operational section of the protective detail. Daniel remained on protective duty during the change in administration to President Barack Obama and again distinguished himself by quickly becoming the highest ranking member of his operational shift of agents. With this distinction came greater responsibility and Daniel quickly rose to the challenge. He was designated as the lead agent responsible for the coordination of the President’s trip to Prague for the signing of the START treaty, his visit to Jakarta, Indonesia, among a myriad of terror threats, and finally as the lead agent responsible for the President’s visit to an active war zone in Afghanistan. With the successful coordination of these historic events, Daniel was awarded a series of commendations and left the protective detail as one of the most distinguished agents in their history.
Daniel transferred to the Baltimore Field Office in 2010 where he immediately made an impact on the community, breaking up one of the largest fraud rings in Maryland’s history.