Morning Security Brief: Mall Shooter, Public Transit Audio Surveillance, Security Officers Unionize, and More

By Ann Longmore-Etheridge

►A masked shooter opened fire on holiday shoppers at Clackamas Town Center Mall yesterday afternoon, killing two people and injuring others before killing himself. CNN has witness reports here. ABC News states that "officers responded to the scene of the shooting within minutes, and four SWAT teams swept the 1.4 million-square-foot building searching for the shooter. "Some store employees and customers remained in hiding inside the mall hours after the 3:30 p.m. shooting.... Authorities went store-to-store to confirm that there was only one shooter and to escort hiding shoppers outside," says the Seattle Times.
Wired reports that "transit authorities in cities across the country are quietly installing microphone-enabled surveillance systems on public buses that would give them the ability to record and store private conversations, according to documents obtained by a news outlet. The systems are being installed in San Francisco, Baltimore, and other cities with funding from the Department of Homeland Security." The installtion of these systems raises questions about eavesdropping without a warrant.
►Security guards in Philadelphia have become unionized, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. The majority of these officers work at the city's office buildings and other large institutions. "The security guards, employed by some of the largest international security companies, will be represented by SEIU Local 32BJ," notes the Inquirer. "The contract brings wage increases and health benefits to guards at the Gallery, the University of Pennsylvania, the Convention Center, and Temple University."
►In other news, an Allentown, Pennsylvania, man allegedly threatened to kill a loss prevention officer who tried to stop him from stealing $13.31-worth of items from a city grocery store. "California’s delegation in the House of Representatives have requested a briefing with the Department of Homeland Security to learn what the agency is doing to fight panga-based smuggling off the state’s shores," reports the Ventura County Star. Finally, German authorities suspect Islamist extremists were responsible for planting an explosive device Monday on a track at the main railway station in Bonn.


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