Partners in Protection: The Sound of Security

By Army Sgt. Saul Rosa DLA Aviation Public Affairs Office

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The Department of Defense describes the criminal intelligence mission as preventing crime and aiding law enforcement objectives by gathering information from sources, in a manner consistent with the law, to provide tactical and strategic criminal intelligence on the existence, identities, and capabilities of criminal suspects and organizations.

Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia, leadership, which includes those from multiple Defense Logistics Agency organizations and other joint military and civilian Department of Defense Agencies, relies on competent intelligence analysts like Donald Bartlett to accomplish this mission for the security the center.

“You could say that being a criminal intelligence analyst is like being in a band,” said Bartlett, a local asset with Security and Emergency Services Division, DLA Installation Support Richmond, DSCR. He explained that each partner organization is a member in the band, information sharing and sourcing is the harmony of the musicians and security is the sound of the music.

Bartlett, a semi-professional musician since the ‘90s who plays guitar and provides vocals, speaks with experience from both sides of the metaphor.   

“One of the most important aspects of being in a band is getting to know your other band members,” said Bartlett. “Once you build those relationships, you learn how those other people work. By learning how people think, you’ll learn more quickly when performing with those people because you know their personalities and you know their track record on how they perform and how they handle themselves in certain venues.” He explained that in criminal intelligence, building partnerships allow you to learn about the other organizations, their habits and missions.

“We have an excellent relationship with Chesterfield County and we strive to have that type of relationship with all law enforcement agencies in the area, but it’s not always achievable due to conflicting interests or different priorities,” said Bartlett.

In addition to partnering with outside organizations, Bartlett primarily works with the security team on the DSCR. 

“I had to learn what my leadership team expected and what information they needed on daily, weekly or monthly basis that pertains to the threat picture. I had to learn what the antiterrorist officer needed to do his job and it’s the same for the installation emergency manager and security specialist. It’s all about learning what they need and once I learn that I can deliver that product. In the due course of time, their needs help drive the intelligence process.” 

Bartlett explained that these relationships are purely beneficial and not having access to another agency’s intelligence does not hinder DLA criminal intelligence’s mission.  

Once the members, or partner organizations, are assembled, they can focus on harmony or, in the case of criminal intelligence, information sharing. 

Bartlett uses various classified and unclassified reporting networks such as the FBI’s suspicious activity reporting mechanism, relationships with local and federal law enforcement and open-source reporting from news agencies.

“I take a look at the incidents that are reported and I weigh that against the information available to me regarding local, state and federal investigations that have the potential to impact our area of operations, and I develop a sight picture regarding the threats in our area,” said Bartlett.

Bartlett explained that, like in a band, practice makes perfect and taking the time to offer training to the civilian workforce is vital for the security of the installation. One of the programs he and other criminal intelligence analysts assist with is the active shooter training provided on the installation.

“Several times a year [the installation] holds active shooter training,” said Bartlett, and Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate (ALICE) certified trainer. “Our active shooter training is based on a number of things. We look at the common-sense perspective of it. We want to raise the awareness that it is a problem that can happen here at any time and it can happen regardless of whether you are ready for it or not.”

Bartlett explained they provide case studies and recent events to demonstrate the severity of the issue before they begin the drills. They also break down the survivability of a shooting to show that employees have a high chance of making it out alive.

 “Our end goal is to provide the attendees with an overview of the dangers of this situation, the warning signs, how to report the warning signs, and how to react if something does happen,” said Bartlett. “I want them to be a little more vigilant when they leave, because if they are more vigilant they are more observant and if they are more observant they can catch something and report it to us.”       

By knowing your other members, creating harmony and practicing, a band can create a sound.

“Like in a band [with criminal intelligence], if you’re not in harmony the world will know if you miss a beat,” said Bartlett. Bartlett explained that the sound of security is silence.