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U.S. sailor's killer possessed ID from Homeland Security Department

The truck driver who shot and killed an American sailor aboard a Navy destroyer was an ex-convict who had a criminal record that included convictions and incarceration for offenses such as manslaughter and distribution of illegal drugs, yet he possessed an ID card issued by a Homeland Security Department directorate, according to a Thursday news story in Navy Times.

Savage had a history of violence and criminal acts and yet he possessed an ID card issued by the TSA, a part of the Homeland Security Department.
Navy Times

Pentagon officials identified the shooter on Thursday as Jeffrey Tyrone Savage, who resided in Chesapeake, Va., and that the Naval Criminal Investigation Service (NCIS) were continuing to dig for more information on the suspect and the killing.

The 35-year-old Savage was killed by Navy security officers last Monday night aboard the U.S.S. Mahan after he jumped a petty officer who was on watch for the ship, took his sidearm and used it to kill Petty Officer 2nd Class Mark Mayo, who also was providing security at the Norfolk Naval Base.

NCIS agents claim they have found nothing indicating the killing was planned that there's nothing in Savage's background linking him to a terrorist group. The NCIS investigators also stated that there's no evidence linking Savage to the Mahan or to any of the destroyer's crew serving on that ship at the time and date of occurrence.

But a disturbing detail about the case surfaced on Thursday: The credential Savage used to gain access to the Navy base was a Transportation Worker Identity Credential (TWIC), which is issued by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) which is part of the Homeland Security Department. The card's year of issuance was listed as 2014 and it was valid for five years, according to TSA's website.

According to the TSA, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security, applicants for a TWIC may be turned down due to:

Conviction for one of the following felonies is disqualifying regardless of when it occurred, and the applicant is not eligible for a waiver.

  1. Espionage or conspiracy to commit espionage.
  2. Sedition, or conspiracy to commit sedition.
  3. Treason, or conspiracy to commit treason.
  4. A federal crime of terrorism as defined in 18 U.S.C. 2332b(g), or comparable State law, or conspiracy to commit such crime.

Conviction for one of the following felonies is disqualifying regardless of when it occurred, and the applicant may apply for a waiver.

  1. A crime involving a transportation security incident. A transportation security incident is a security incident resulting in a significant loss of life, environmental damage, transportation system disruption, or economic disruption in a particular area, as defined in 46 U.S.C. 70101. The term "economic disruption" does not include a work stoppage or other employee-related action not related to terrorism and resulting from an employer-employee dispute.
  2. Improper transportation of a hazardous material under 49 U.S.C. 5124, or a State law that is comparable.
  3. Unlawful possession, use, sale, distribution, manufacture, purchase, receipt, transfer, shipping, transporting, import, export, storage of, or dealing in an explosive or explosive device. An explosive or explosive device includes an explosive or explosive material as defined in 18 U.S.C. 232(5), 841(c) through 841(f), and 844(j); and a destructive device, as defined in 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(4) and 26 U.S.C. 5845(f).
  4. Murder.
  5. Making any threat, or maliciously conveying false information knowing the same to be false, concerning the deliverance, placement, or detonation of an explosive or other lethal device in or against a place of public use, a state or government facility, a public transportations system, or an infrastructure facility.
  6. Violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, 18 U.S.C. 1961,et seq., or a comparable State law, where one of the predicate acts found by a jury or admitted by the defendant, consists of one of the crimes listed in Column A.
  7. Attempt to commit the crimes in Part A, items 1 - 4.
  8. Conspiracy or attempt to commit the crimes in Part A, items 5 – 10.

Savage was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in Mecklenburg County, N.C., and released from prison Dec. 30, 2009, records showed. Most jurisdictions define voluntary manslaughter the killing of a human being in which the offender had no prior intent to kill and acted during "the heat of passion."