Saturday, February 24, 2018
Military News

Woman accused of sneaking into MacDill is arrested

TAMPA — A homeless woman charged with sneaking into MacDill Air Force Base four times since October has been arrested in Colorado on a federal warrant and returned to Tampa, court records show.

Records do not make clear when Suzanne Jensen, 50, was arrested nor provide the circumstances. But a hearing was held July 30 in U.S. District Court in Denver at which she waived a detention hearing in that state and agreed to return to Florida.

"Jensen states that she is the person being sought in Florida and Maryland," federal court records show. It is not clear why she is being sought in Maryland.

Jensen's first appearance is scheduled in Tampa's federal court at 2 p.m. today. She was charged in June with four federal charges of trespassing on a military installation and possession of a stolen military ID.

Jensen's ability to sneak onto MacDill, one of the nation's most important military installations, caused embarrassment for the base and led U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson to seek a briefing on security there. MacDill is home to the headquarters of two of the military's premier combat commands, U.S. Special Operations Command and Central Command.

Jensen, court records show, was first discovered at MacDill on Oct. 1, when she was found on a boat at MacDill's marina. She jumped in the water and swam away, records said, when confronted but was later found near a base restaurant. She was given a trespass warning.

But Jensen was discovered on the base three more times — Nov. 18, Dec. 17 and Jan. 4 — and received additional warnings. In the November incident, court records said, Jensen demonstrated to base security officers how she got onto the base by turning a trash can upside down and climbing over a wall.

In the last incident, records show, she told officers that "for about eight days she had been living inside a boat that was on a trailer parked in the base's family Camp area," the affidavit says.

Jensen has a history of trying to enter military installations. In August 2012, she pleaded guilty to a trespass charge after she was accused of illegally entering Fort Myer in Virginia. She was sentenced to time served.

In 2007, she was charged with two federal trespass counts in North Carolina in a case that eventually was dismissed. She was accused of illegally entering Fort Bragg and Pope Air Force Base.

After a MacDill tour and security briefing, Nelson said, "I am convinced that they are doing what they can, and it is sufficient for our national security interests."

William R. Levesque can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 226-3432.

Comments
Iraqi general who helped defeat ISIS returns to Tampa for commando award

Iraqi general who helped defeat ISIS returns to Tampa for commando award

PALM HARBOR — Four years ago, during a visit to Tampa, Iraqi Staff Gen. Talib Shgati Mshari Al Kenani issued a warning to military leaders here about a jihadi group calling itself the Islamic State.This week, Al Kenani, head of the Iraqi commando for...
Published: 02/23/18
Howard Altman: Expert from Lutz finds U.S. ill prepared for conflict in Korea

Howard Altman: Expert from Lutz finds U.S. ill prepared for conflict in Korea

Rick Lamb, who spent a good part of the past two years in South Korea assessing the state of U.S. forces on the peninsula, was taken aback by what he discovered."Overall, I was surprised how much it atrophied," said Lamb, a retired Army Ranger comman...
Published: 02/21/18
Updated: 02/22/18
Syria’s starved, rebellious suburb under attack

Syria’s starved, rebellious suburb under attack

BEIRUT — The airstrikes came at a rate of one a minute, with horrible results: civilians fleeing collapsing buildings, children trapped under slabs of concrete, paramedics grimly rushing the bloodied victims away on stretchers. At least 100 people we...
Published: 02/20/18
Global commandos flock to Palm Harbor to discuss future of Special Operations

Global commandos flock to Palm Harbor to discuss future of Special Operations

Commando leaders from around the globe are coming to Pinellas County this week to discuss common threats in an increasingly unstable world.Most European Union members "are either growing or reinforcing" their special operations forces, French Maj. Ge...
Published: 02/20/18
Global commandos flock to Palm Harbor to discuss future of Special Operations

Global commandos flock to Palm Harbor to discuss future of Special Operations

Commando leaders from around the globe are coming to Pinellas County this week to discuss common threats in an increasingly unstable world.Most European Union members "are either growing or reinforcing" their special operations forces, French Maj. Ge...
Published: 02/20/18
ISIS ambush kills at least 27 Iraqi Shiite-led fighters

ISIS ambush kills at least 27 Iraqi Shiite-led fighters

BAGHDAD — Islamic State militants ambushed a group of Iraq’s Shiite-led paramilitary fighters, killing at least 27, more than two months after Baghdad declared victory over the extremist group, officials said Monday The Popular Mobilization Forces, a...
Published: 02/19/18
Planning begins for Warrior Games coming to Tampa in 2019

Planning begins for Warrior Games coming to Tampa in 2019

TAMPA — Army Gen. Raymond A. "Tony" Thomas III, the commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, had a court-side epiphany last July at the United Center in Chicago while watching the annual Department of Defense Warrior Games. So impressed w...
Published: 02/19/18
Howard Altman: Later AirFest good for fundraising

Howard Altman: Later AirFest good for fundraising

On May 12 and 13, the skies above MacDill Air Force Base will be busier than usual, with Navy F-18s, Air Force F-22s and A-10s and a host of civilian stunt pilots performing impressive feats of aerobatics.It’s all part of the semi-regular Tampa Bay C...
Published: 02/16/18
VA chief Shulkin, staff misled ethics officials about European trip, report finds

VA chief Shulkin, staff misled ethics officials about European trip, report finds

Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin’s chief of staff doctored an email and made false statements to create a pretext for taxpayers to cover expenses for the secretary’s wife on a 10-day trip to Europe last summer, the agency’s inspector general ...
Published: 02/14/18
Trump seeks 11 percent SOCom budget increase

Trump seeks 11 percent SOCom budget increase

President Donald Trump’s proposed military budget includes a nearly 11 percent spending increase for U.S. Special Operations Command headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base.The measure, if approved by Congress, would bump up the command’s budget by 1...
Published: 02/12/18