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NEWS | Sept. 17, 2014

Military Base access now requires FBI Background Checks

By Senior Airman Dennis Sloan Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Anyone trying to gain access to military installations, including Joint Base Charleston, will now be automatically screened against the Federal Bureau of Investigation's criminal database and pulled aside if the system shows an arrest, felony or outstanding warrant. The new Defense Department tool is part of a larger, government-wide effort to continuously vet people with access to secure facilities. This linkage had been in the works for several years, but took on renewed urgency after the Sept. 16, 2013, Washington Navy Yard shooting. The gunman entered secure areas using a valid ID card, despite having an arrest record and a history of other infractions. "The concept and development of this system began in 2011, but was not implemented here until April of this year," said Robert Trout, 628th Security Forces Squadron chief of plans and programs." Identification smartcards issued to troops, veterans, relatives and other individuals permitted to enter military bases have long been checked against a DOD database before access is granted, but an instant FBI NCIC check has never been part of the process. "It only takes milliseconds to perform this NCIC check, so the ID check process is not slowed and provides better security which is a win win," said Trout. The system provides an access recommendation based on information provided from DEERS, NCIC, other Air Force and sister service installations such as. Information includes Wants and Warrants, Barred, Invalid ID, Expired ID and absent without leave. "The program has already made an impact here at JB Charleston," said Trout. "Several wanted personnel have been identified, detained and taken to jail by local authorities using this system." If someone from out of state has a warrant and the state police cannot come and pick the individual up they are barred access to JB Charleston.