Inspector General: Navy base access program lets felons on base without proper background checks

Posted at 7:57 PM, Sep 17, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-17 20:07:08-04

The morning of the Navy Yard shooting, a 56- page report was released to Congress, where the Inspector General rips apart the Navy's new "RapidGate" access program, and says it places people on base at an "unacceptable level of safety and security risk."

The RapidGate program is used at Navy bases all around the country including here in Hampton Roads and the Washington Navy Yard.

During an investigation by the Navy Inspector General's office that started last year, they tracked at least 52 convicted felons on 7 different Navy bases who had routine, unauthorized access.

The report says that's because the RapidGate program, run by a company called EID Passport, only uses public records for background checks.

According to federal contracting policy, they should be running all background checks through the FBI's National Crime Information Center, which has complete and accurate records from police departments and courts around the country.

So if RapidGate had worked like it was supposed to, would it have stopped Aaron Alexis's shooting rampage Monday at the Navy Yard?

Probably not according to the Navy IT subcontractor that Alexis worked for, he had a Secret Security Clearance, and it was checked as recently as July.

The background check for a security clearance is done by the Pentagon, not RapidGate.

Because of that, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus is now directing a complete review of the Navy and Marine Corps security procedures at bases around the country.

Admiral Bill Gortney of Navy Fleet Forces Command, and Lt. General Rick Tryon of Marine Corps Forces Command, both flag officers stationed right here in Norfolk, will be leading that security review, due to be completed in two weeks.


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