Thursday, January 29, 2015

COPE SOUTH experts exchange knowledge, techniques

by 1st Lt. Jake Bailey,
Pacific Air Forces Public Affairs

1/28/2015 - BAF BASE BANGABANDHU, Bangladesh -- The flight line here at Exercise COPE SOUTH 15 is usually a flurry of activity every morning, with maintainers firing up auxiliary power units and loadmasters finalizing their cargo plan.

However on Jan. 27, there wasn't a single C-130 aircraft engine running. Instead, U.S. and Bangladesh Air Force Airmen were busy forging relationships and exchanging knowledge in their respective fields with one another.

CS15 features subject-matter expert exchanges, also known as SMEEs, across a multitude of Air Force specialties, including operations, maintenance and rigging disciplines. Airmen from Yokota Air Base, Japan, have the opportunity to meet face-to-face with their respective BAF counterparts and learn aspects of each other's duties and technical prowess.

"SMEE day is probably the most important block of time here at COPE SOUTH," said Maj. Adam Staubach, COPE SOUTH mission commander. "It's really where the exercise takes off in terms of developing an understanding of each other's capabilities and sharing ways in which we can operate more cohesively as a unified force."

Staff Sgt. Scott Sorensen, a 374th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron C-130H guidance and control system technician, had an opportunity to engage with several BAF maintenance personnel who share his specialty and discuss a variety of aircraft maintenance matters.

"Although the BAF maintainers work on the C-130B and we work on the C-130H, we are very similar in a lot of ways," Sorensen said. "They've seen and done a lot of things with the Herc during their careers. As a fellow maintainer, I can appreciate their attention to detail and commitment to keep it flying 100 percent."

One of the busiest exchanges happened in the cargo hold area of the flight line, where riggers and loadmasters from Yokota's 374th Airlift Wing demonstrated their patented low-cost, low-altitude, or LCLA, airdrop bundle techniques to Bangladeshi Airmen.

The LCLA airdrop configuration utilizes minimal rigging supplies and decommissioned personnel parachutes that are still serviceable to deliver customized cargo -- such as humanitarian aid and disaster relief -- in bundles up to 600 pounds. Additionally, it can be rigged in a "coastal" configuration suitable for a shoreline drop zone.

"LCLA offers a cheap, effective and accurate delivery system that is transferable across the tactical airlift, especially the C-130, community," said Staff. Sgt. Wantani Redo, a U.S. Army-certified rigger assigned to the 374th Logistics Readiness Squadron. "This region is prone to floods and natural disasters, so we're excited and proud to share this innovative airdrop method with our Bangladeshi partners."

To further demonstrate the technique, two LCLA bundles configured by Yokota and BAF Airmen were loaded on a BAF C-130B aircraft for delivery to a forward drop zone near Sylhet. The following day, Bangladeshi Airmen pushed the bundles from the ramp of their C-130 where each successfully landed in its designated drop area.

"Days like today are an important way to learn not only about each other, but how we can improve our teamwork as Airmen," Wantani said.

West Coast Homicide Suspect Arrested in West Texas

San Bernardino County Fugitive Captured

San Antonio, TX – Logan Anderson Swank, 20, was arrested this morning by members of the United States Marshals Service Lone Star Fugitive Task Force (LSFTF) in San Antonio, TX. An arrest warrant was issued pursuant to an investigation by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department (SBCSD) Homicide Detail, where it is alleged that Swank committed homicide.

This morning, members of the LSFTF were contacted by detectives from the SBCSD to assist in searching for Swank here in San Antonio. Members of the LSFTF immediately initiated an investigation in locating and apprehending Swank. Through investigative efforts, task force officers determined that Swank was hiding out in an apartment located in the 8000 block of Midcrown Drive, on the northeast side of San Antonio. While conducting surveillance, task force officers observed Swank exit an apartment and walk toward the parking lot. Task force officers approached Swank, identified themselves, and took him into custody without incident.

On September 29, 2014, Logan Swank and another accomplice, Wesley Swank, 28, were allegedly involved in shooting a man with a shotgun in the 2200 block of Muni Road, in Apple Valley, CA. Reports stated that the victim was found sitting in a car, located in the parking lot of the apartment complex. The victim suffered from 1 gunshot wound and was pronounced dead at the scene. After an extensive investigation by SBCSD detectives, arrest warrants were issued yesterday for the 2 suspects involved in the shooting. Welsey Swank was arrested last night by SBCSD Homicide Detail officers and Logan Swank remained a fugitive at large until he was arrested this morning by LSFTF officers.

Logan Swank is currently being held in custody at the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office awaiting extradition to San Bernardino County.

Robert R. Almonte, United States Marshal for the Western District of Texas, states, “Excellent collaborative efforts by the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department, Lone Star Fugitive Task Force, and the Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force for apprehending these violent fugitives safely and without delay. I pray the victim’s family will find peace and closure knowing that these 2 men will be held accountable for their actions.”

Members of the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force:

    New Braunfels Police Department
    San Antonio Police Department
    San Antonio Independent School District Police Department
    Bexar County Sheriff’s Office
    Comal County Sheriff’s Office
    Bexar County Fire Marshal’s Office
    Bexar County District Attorney’s Office
    Texas Office of The Attorney General
    Texas Department of Public Safety
    Texas Department of Criminal Justice – Office of the Inspector General
    Immigration & Customs Enforcement – Office of Detention & Removal
    U.S. Marshals Service

U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force Arrests Scranton Rape Suspect

Scranton, PA – Today, U.S. Marshal Martin Pane announced the arrest of Noren Cortez, a 43-year old man. On January 28, 2015, the Scranton Police Department obtained an arrest warrant charging Cortez with rape of a child, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child less than 16 years old, statutory sexual assault, indecent assault less than 16 years old, indecent assault less than 13 years old, sexual contact with a minor and corruption of minors.

On January 29, the United States Marshals Service (USMS) Fugitive Task Force arrested Cortez without incident at a business on Alberigi Drive in Jessup, PA. He was turned over to the Scranton Police Department pending judicial proceedings on the case.

United States Marshal Pane stated, “Crimes of this significance, especially against our children, do irreparable harm. It is our mission to move rapidly on these types of fugitives and bring them before the court to answer for their crimes.”

The USMS Fugitive Task Force in the Middle District of Pennsylvania is comprised of 23 state, county and local police agencies, including the Scranton Police Department and the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole – both of whom participated in this arrest.

U.S. Marshals Arrest Child Neglect Suspect

Norfolk, VA – United States Marshal Robert W. Mathieson announces the capture of Andre Anthony Williams. Williams was wanted by the Norfolk Police Department for Felony Abuse & Neglect of Children.

In September 2014, a felony warrant was issued out of Norfolk for Williams’ arrest in relation to an incident that occurred earlier in the year. In January 2015, Norfolk Police Department asked for the assistance of the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force in locating and apprehending Williams. Investigation by Deputy Marshals showed that Williams had not gone far, and was believed to still be residing in Hampton Roads.

On January 29th, the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force was able to confirm Williams was still in this area. Around 4:00 PM Deputy Marshals and Task Force Officers observed Williams exiting a residence near Palmyra Street and Denver Avenue in Norfolk. Williams was taken into custody seconds later without incident in the driveway of the residence. Williams is currently being held at Norfolk City Jail.

The U.S. Marshals-led Fugitive Task Force consists of law enforcement officers from the U.S. Marshals, Chesapeake Sheriff’s Department, Newport News Police Department, Portsmouth Police Department and Norfolk Police Department. The main objective of the task force is to seek out and arrest violent offenders with outstanding federal and state warrants.

The U.S. Marshals Service, America’s oldest federal law enforcement agency, arrested more than 36,050 federal fugitives, 74,000 state and local fugitives and 11,800 sex offenders in 2013. Our investigative network and capabilities allow for the unique ability to track and apprehend any fugitive who attempts to evade police capture, anywhere in the country.