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Everyday Heroes

Identifying a potential school threat

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Public Service Heroes

Everything you do is in service of the community, helping improve the lives of the people you serve. When you use Thomson Reuters tools such as CLEAR®, Court Express, and Batch Services to get the most out of your investigations, you're creating stories Everyday. And we'd love to hear them.

Past winners and great stories.

San Bernardino Police Department
Story submitted by Daani-Ruth Svonkin

San Bernardino Police Department
Daani-Ruth Svonkin

On December 2, 2015, the SBPD received a call concerning a mass shooting. Once they identified the suspects, Thomson Reuters CLEAR® was the only database that provided the correct address. Read more

Warrenton Police Department
John Hutchins

How they tripled their rate of finding people by utilizing current, accurate information. Read more

Warrenton Police Department

Ever since I've been using CLEAR, my rate of finding people has tripled. The information is normally pretty accurate and if there is a person that does not use their own information regularly, I can always find a relative or someone as an associate to the individual and contact is normally made. Thank you for all that you do to keep the information current.

Federal Government Agency
Victoria Manley

Locating and arresting outstanding warrants. Read more

Federal Government Agency

Thanks to CLEAR, I have managed to assist in the arrest of 9 outstanding warrants and counting in my short 7 years with the bureau. I really do appreciate this service. I look forward to the upgrades and, prayerfully, they will be an enhancement.

Register of Wills
Loraine Hennessy

Finding heirs and their addresses in an estate. Read more

Register of Wills

I have used CLEAR to track down heirs in an estate or to get a current address. It has been a really useful tool for those searches.

Pasadena Independent School District and Police Department

How they identified and located a potential school shooter. Read more

Pasadena Independent School District
Police Department
Pasadena, Texas

Using CLEAR to Apprehend a Potential School Shooter

One early morning last October, the Pasadena School District received information regarding a threat towards an elementary school in the district obtained through a phone call and online chat with the Veteran's Crisis Hotline. The caller, who would not identify himself, threatened to stage a shooting at the elementary school at 3 p.m. that day using at AK-47 assault rifle.

The only information available from the conversations was the suspect's phone number, several screen names, and the IP address from the chat session that provided coordinates to two geographic areas inside of the city. The resulting fast work of the Pasadena Independent School District Police Department, with help from the FBI, Secret Service, Coast Guard, and Texas Rangers, is a heroic story in which the suspect was found and detained before any harm could be done to the school.

Pasadena ISD Police had been considering the purchase of CLEAR services, but had not entered into a contract or approved the purchase. When the information on the call was received, the detective from the department contacted their CLEAR rep and explained the threat and asked for immediate assistance to perform a reverse lookup search on the phone number provided. The CLEAR search was performed and immediately found that the number was a prepaid phone and also identified the service carrier.

The cell phone service carrier was contacted and provided call, data, and cell tower recordings for the previous 24 hours on the number in question. The call records indicated that the phone belonged to a subject in a nearby small town. The last tower hit by the phone in question aligned with the specific coordinates from the IP address, which was in close proximity to a hotel. Through multi-agency coordination the IP address provided by the Veterans Hotline was confirmed to be located at a local hotel, while the FBI had a possible identification of the caller. With the confirmation of the location and a possible suspect, the Pasadena ISD Detective contacted the hotel and verified that the suspect had checked in only two days before and was ending his stay that day.

The suspect had listed his automobile information upon check-in. While en route to the hotel, the detective contacted the CLEAR representative a second time and provided the suspect information. A comprehensive search on the suspect was emailed to the Detective, pulled from the CLEAR software. Using the CLEAR report, two other jurisdictions were notified to check residences and vehicles belonging to the suspect and family members were being contacted for background information on the subject including possible history of mental illness.

Back on scene, the detective drove through the parking lot of the hotel and discovered the automobile listed on the hotel check-in. The registration returned the suspect. The FBI had a team of agents meet with the local police department at a nearby intersection while detectives staged hotel monitoring from an adjoining room. A local SWAT team took up positions in the hallway and the adjoining room in case the suspect left his room. The detective verified with the hotel manager that the picture of the suspect was the man who had checked into the room.

By 11:54 a.m. the police department made entry to the hotel room and took the suspect into custody without incident. They learned he suffered from major depression and wasn't taking the medications prescribed to him. The suspect subsequently admitted to making the threats to the Veteran's Crisis Hotline and was booked on the charge of Exhibition of a Firearm, a third-degree felony.

As a result of his threat, four separate school districts were on high alert that day, two of which implemented multiple campus lockdowns. All of the agencies working together based on, to a large degree, information provided by CLEAR resulted in the apprehension of a potential school shooter.

Charity: National Center for Missing & Exploited Children – $5,000 donation

Lynn, Massachusetts Police Department

CLEAR helps capture a shooting suspect. Read more

Lynn, Massachusetts Police Department

On 11/15/12, at 4:14 PM, Lynn, Massachusetts Police responded to 12 Linwood St., Lynn, on a report of a person shot. Upon arrival, officers located a male who had sustained multiple gunshot wounds. EMS personnel responded and transported the male to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston where his condition was stabilized. Investigators learned that the 29 year-old boyfriend of a female who resided at this address was responsible for the shooting.

On all Lynn Police and Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles records, the address of the suspect was 194 Curwin Circle, Lynn, MA. Investigators responded and searched this location, but the suspect was not located here and his family was uncooperative as to his whereabouts.

A search of the CLEAR database records was conducted on the suspect at 5:05 PM, which revealed an address for him as recent as 3/12/12 at 98 Bridge St., #2L, Salem, MA. Salem Police Department detectives were contacted and they confirmed that they had reports tying the suspect to the address in Salem, and they confirmed the identity of a female who also resided at this address.

During surveillance of the address, people were seen moving about in the second floor apartment and a few moments later three (3) subjects exited the address and movement ceased in the 2nd floor. These subjects were carrying large bags, which they placed in a pick-up truck that was parked in the driveway of the address. The shooting suspect was identified as one of these subjects.

The three subjects then drove away from the address in two (2) vehicles that were then stopped by Salem PD. The shooting suspect was confirmed as being in one of the vehicles and he was placed under arrest for Attempted Murder.

As a Salem PD Patrol Unit initiated a stop of the vehicle the shooting suspect was in, items were thrown from the passenger side front window. After the vehicles were stopped, these items were retrieved and found to contain a quantity of pills. At this time, the passenger in the vehicle, a 26 year-old resident of Lynn, was taken into custody for narcotics charges, which the shooting suspect will face as well. The other vehicle, a Ford F-150, was operated by a girlfriend of the suspect who was found to have a loaded firearm in her waistband (she was licensed to carry the firearm).

The search of the pickup truck revealed a large quantity of ammunition, two empty firearms boxes, and a Mossberg Shotgun. One of the empty boxes was for a .380 the female was carrying in her waistband. The other was for a Ruger 9mm handgun. The gun was registered to the female, but was not located. It is believed to be the firearm used in the shooting. Further, a search warrant was obtained for apartment #2L at 98 Bridge St., Salem, and an indoor marijuana growing operation was found. The occupants of the apartment face additional narcotics charges. In sum, following the shooting, investigators had only one Lynn address connected to the shooting suspect. This address was checked and the suspect was not there. There were not even any other potential addresses connected to the suspect when a CLEAR check was conducted and found the address in Salem for the suspect. In less than an hour after learning this, the suspect was arrested. A quantity of narcotics discarded was also seized and the shooting suspect and the other male were also charged with narcotics offenses. Additionally, the female involved was in the process of moving her firearms and ammunition to another location, likely to separate them from the marijuana growing operation in the event law enforcement personnel came to the address in accordance with the shooting investigation. She also likely supplied the suspect with the firearm used in the shooting.

Prior to conducting the CLEAR check, she had not been connected to the suspect. It was clear that all of these subjects were moving evidence and taking steps to evade law enforcement following the shooting, and if they had been allowed a few more minutes, they would have been successful. Without the current information of the shooting suspect's address from CLEAR, he would have eluded capture for some time, the narcotics and firearms would not have been seized, and the marijuana growing operation would not have been discovered.

Charity: Law Enforcement Officer's Memorial Fund - $1,000 donation

Vermont Department Of Corrections

Locating a repeat sexual offender. Read more

Vermont Department Of Corrections

In 1989, an offender was convicted of sexual assault on a minor in Vermont. The offense involved his repeated molestation of his girlfriend's 5 year-old daughter. While on bail, he fled the state prior to sentencing. Over the years, attempts were made to locate the offender, but to no avail. The offender was rumored to have relocated to the State of New York, or was with family in Florida or Massachusetts. In 2009, the Vermont Department of Corrections continued its search for the missing sex offender through the use of CLEAR. Investigators were able to track the offender from Vermont to Texas and finally Mississippi. In September of 2010, investigators were able to pinpoint the location of the offender, and with the assistance of the Hinds County Sherriff's Department, the offender was apprehended. After 21 years on the run, he returned to the State of Vermont for incarceration.