Domestic Terrorism Conference Attracts Law Enforcement Personnel from Throughout California
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Domestic Terrorism Conference Attracts Law Enforcement Personnel from Throughout California

Posted: April 2, 2009

More than 200 law enforcement personnel from throughout California attended ADL's all-day conference, "Domestic Terrorism: From Detection to Response," on March 24 at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles

Participants included representatives of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies who gathered to learn tactics and procedures to counteract extremist activity.

The conference was co-sponsored by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD).

Plenary sessions and workshops were held on a variety of subjects including emerging trends in domestic terrorism, how to recognize extremist symbols and tattoos, information technology in the fight against domestic terrorism, prison extremists, and eco-terrorism including animal rights extremists.  A new, updated report on Animal Rights Extremists targeting the University of California was distributed. 

A highlight of the day's activities was the luncheon presentation of the 2009 Helene and Joseph Sherwood Prize for Combating Hate, presented to two individual law enforcement professionals and a joint award to LAPD and the Los Angeles Unified School Police for outstanding commitment to affecting the lives of at-risk youth at the Van Nuys Juvenile Impact Boot Camp.

Judge Louis Freeh, former director of the FBI, was the keynote speaker.  He discussed his personal experience with the FBI and called ADL "a barometer, antenna and guidepost" for emerging trends in extremism.

Regional Director Amanda Susskind explained the importance of ADL's partnership with law enforcement to fight bigotry, racism and extremism and that ADL is "in a unique position to monitor, prepare in-depth reports, and track these trends."

Conferences of this kind are particularly important in California where there is the largest concentration of racist skinheads in the country, where racist prison gangs are a major problem, and where there has been a number of eco-terrorist attacks.

ADL offers numerous resources to law enforcement including the Law Enforcement Agency Resource Network Web site, the nation's most comprehensive, constantly updated resource for information on extremist activity.  In addition, ADL provides extremism and hate crime training workshops, a hate symbols data base, reports and publications on extremist groups and activity and a calendar of upcoming extremist events across the country.  

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