Category Archives: Public Safety

The Hill: America needs a ‘Duck and Cover’ for domestic terrorism

Despite a persistent threat and great courses like the CAT Eyes Program & “Run, Hide, Fight“, there still is no standardized effort to train citizens on terrorism and what they should do if an attack were to occur. If your local law enforcement agency, school or workplace hasn’t trained you in what to do; ask them to immediately!

In the meantime, this piece examines what can be done to try and make Americans more vigilant and mentally prepared for what may occur.

Click here to read the full story in The Hill.

How ’60 Minutes’ got it wrong about Chicago

This piece in The Hill looks at last Sunday’s “60 Minutes” segment entitled “Crisis in Chicago” and discuses how their analysis fails to truly explore the cause and effect of a violent crime epidemic in Chicago that left 764 people dead within the last year.

To read the full article, please click here.

How ’60 Minutes’ got it wrong about Chicago

This piece in The Hill looks at last Sunday’s “60 Minutes” segment entitled “Crisis in Chicago” and discuses how their analysis fails to truly explore the cause and effect of a violent crime epidemic in Chicago that left 764 people dead within the last year.

To read the full article, please click here.

America needs security, not the appearance thereof (The Hill)

In this week’s column in The Hill, I question America’s resolve and preparedness to address the continual rise of violence facing society. Does America learn from past attacks here and abroad, or is it collectively just trying to ‘get back to normal’? Security is an ever-evolving discipline, and leaders need to continuously evolve to protect our nation’s citizens and infrastructure.

Please click here to read the full piece in The Hill.

Protesters: It’s called a permit

My November 10, 2016 column in The Hill addresses the post-election protests that have popped up across the nation, and why local law enforcement is not enforcing the requirement for demonstrations to have permits equally. Has “looking the other way” on non-permitted protests created a ‘carrot without a stick’ for protesters who gridlock cities without objectives, goals or organization to their protests? Please share and discuss as this is an important question for many of us who have been living with these demonstrations for upwards of two years now.

Please click here to read the entire piece.

The Hill: ‘Status offenses’ limit criminal justice reform efforts

My latest piece in The Hill takes on how some politically charged types of crime are becoming modern-day “Status Offenses” & how that impacts Criminal Justice Reform efforts. Please share and discuss as I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one, as it impacts me personally.

To read the full article, please click here.

Mannes to Moderate Expert Forum on Violent Extremism

nccOn the morning of Friday, October 14, A. Benjamin Mannes, an elected Governor on the executive board of Philadelphia InfraGard (the FBI-coordinated public/private partnership) and Regular Contributor to The Hill will be moderating the Forum on Violent Extremism at the Constitution Center in Philadelphia.  This forum will be the first of its kind to bring nationally recognized subject matter experts in radicalization together with FBI and Philadelphia police leaders on a panel that will discuss this issue with attendees.

Mannes hosted a similar event to discuss active shooter incidents in 2013, following the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school, which was a sold-out event that joined a noted forensic Psychologist together with the Philadelphia Police, Department of Homeland Security, FBI and private security experts.  Topics covered will include ISIS radicalization and lessons learned from domestic terrorist incidents.

This two-hour session will also highlight public/private partnerships, federal, state and local resources, and suspicious activity reporting in an effort to enhance safety throughout our region. Our highly regarded panel of experts will include:

Peter Leitner, PhD
President, Higgins Counterterrorism Research Center, 
Sr. Fellow, George Washington University Center for Advanced Defense Studies Advisor on Terrorism, New York University Law School

Dale Yeager
Certified Forensic Profiler and CEO of SERAPH

Michael Batley
Faculty, Temple University Real Estate Institute

Lt. James Dambach
Commanding Officer, Homeland Security Unit/Dignitary Protection Section
Philadelphia Police Department

Janelle Miller
Assistant Special Agent in Charge
FBI, Philadelphia Division

This important event will give attendees important tools needed to recognize the behaviors associated with radicalization and violent extremism, to hopefully prevent further home-grown terrorist attacks.

The Hill: Why facts matter in police shootings

My latest piece in The Hill looks at the differences between the two lives lost in Los Angeles County this week.

As quoted:
“Black Lives Matter” vs. “All Lives Matter” is, in my opinion a false dichotomy. As someone who grew up in both New York and Los Angeles during the crack explosion, I was taught that “No Lives Matter,” until you make a name for yourself and define how your life matters to those around you.”

PLEASE READ THE FULL ARTICLE AND SHARE IT TO GET THE FULL STORY IN THE PUBLIC CONSCIOUSNESS.

Lessons from Charlotte: When a protest is just a riot

This week, an non-permitted demonstration in Downtown Charlotte escalated into a mass of property damage and the murder of a protester by another protester in the crowd. The media reported this by labeling it as a “Violent Protest”.  Similar labels were attached to riots in Baltimore, Ferguson and Milwaukee; but when there’s clear evidence of multiple crimes being committed during a “protest”, it’s officially defined a riot.

On September 23, 2016, my latest piece was published in The Hill that analyzes the events in Charlotte and defines this issue more clearly.  To read the full story, click here.

John Cardillo & Ben Mannes discuss tactics and the Tulsa shooting

Ben Mannes appeared again on The John Cardillo Show, which airs weekday mornings on WBIZ 880AM in Miami/Fort Lauderdale, to discuss the latest controversial police shooting of an unarmed suspect. The shooting of Terrence Crutcher, an unarmed black suspect with PCP in his vehicle by Tulsa Police Officer Betty Shelby was, in my opinion about poor tactics and/or training, not her justification to use deadly force.

In watching the video, it was clear that Crutcher should have complied and was being given clear and lawful orders, ignoring them by walking back to his vehicle (albeit with his hands up).  Tactically, I believed this to call for nonlethal/less-lethal force such as a taser, takedown, or impact weapon. Had Officer Shelby and her backup officers bridged the distance and attempted a less lethal intervention method he got to his driver’s door, Crutcher would be alive and in custody now.

On an important note, had Crutcher listened and lawfully complied with Shelby (which is hard to do on PCP), and the officers on the scene not been afraid to go ‘old school’ and put hands on him; Crutcher would be alive today.