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Nick Wakeman

Security questions surround Navy Yard shooting

There are many things we know, and probably more that we don’t know about the shooting at the Navy Yard.

Top of mind for many is how did Aaron Alexis get a security clearance and a valid common access card that let him enter Building 197 and kill 12 people?

Given his history of anger issues and gun-related incidents, it’s a little mind-boggling that he was able to get the credentials he had.

One source told me that the better question is how recently was he investigated, and who adjudicated the decision to give him a secret clearance. That’s most likely where the process broke down.

Another question will surround the process for entering the building. Alexis was able to get a shotgun into the building, according to FederalNewsRadio. How did he do that? Did carry it in, or was it secreted inside equipment he was there to install?

Time.com is reporting that the Defense Department inspector general has a report on the security at the Navy Yard that says the Navy had relaxed security on contractors to save costs.

The IG audit was conducted prior to the shooting, of course, but it should still be illuminating; however, a source told me that report may not be publicly released, but hopefully a redacted version will be.

My expectation is that the risk tolerance at federal facilities will change. There is a constant balancing act between security and access, and the balance will swing toward security for the time being.

Another question on my mind is what happens to the relationship between Alexis’ employer, The Experts Inc., and their prime contractor, Hewlett-Packard Co? The Experts are a subcontractor on the Navy Marines Corps Intranet, and the follow-on Next Generation Enterprise Network contract, which is under protest.

The companies aren’t answering that question. Probably the only time we’ll find out is through the protest involving NGEN, and if HP prevails. If the Experts isn’t on their list of teammates, we’ll know why.

But HP and the Experts have issued statements offering their condolences and saying they are cooperating with law enforcement.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Sep 17, 2013 at 1:14 PM


Reader Comments

Wed, Sep 18, 2013

More victims of "gun control" diarming the law abiding and creating fish in a barrel. If but one individual could have had the means to defend his life in these "gun free" zones the death toll would most likely be far less. These people are crazy not stupid; why do you think that ALL the mass killings occur in "gun free zones". Why do we keep allowing politicians to take away our ability to defend ourseves.Why make the otherwise law abiding criminals if they chose to defend themseles. What messed up logic. God give the victims of these crazies and gun contol peace and justice.

Wed, Sep 18, 2013

You either have perimeter security, or you don't. The 'security theater' in place at many sites leads to complacency, while providing little actual protection.

Wed, Sep 18, 2013

In addition to the question "how did Aaron Alexis get a security clearance and a valid common access card that let him enter Building 197 and kill 12 people?" is "how did he enter a 'secured' Navy facility with a SHOTGUN!?!?!"

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