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As 9/11 Nears, NJ Homeland Security Boss Says Stay Vigilant [AUDIO]

As we mark the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks tomorrow, the head of the Jersey Office of Homeland Security is asking everyone to keep their eyes open and stay vigilant.

9/11 World Trade Center
Following the collapse of the World Trade Center on 9/11/01 (Anthony Coerreia, Getty Images)

OHS Director Ed Dickson says, “We can go back to the slogan see something, say something – suspicious vehicles, unattended packages, people in places where they really shouldn’t be – things that seem out of place- that’s suspicious.”

He says since September 11th, “Al Qaeda’s capacity has been diminished – their intent is still high, but this is still a group we need to keep an eye on and be wary of…And there’s other threats out there as well, but we can’t take our eye off this group.”

Dickson adds the “lone wolf” scenario, where a deranged individual does something violent, is a definite cause for concern.

“We’ve seen shootings in Aurora, Colorado – at the movie theatre – fast forward, we’ve seen shootings at Oak Creek Wisconsin…and here recently in New Jersey – we had an incident in Old Bridge…There’s a range of suspicious activities that are out there…and the person that observes this activity knows what fits- and knows what doesn’t…People will know it when they see it- and they to have the confidence to be able to report that – don’t be afraid of wasting law enforcement’s time.”

He also says, “The FBI, the local police, the state police – they spend a lot of time running these leads out – they do a very good job, because they know what the stakes are…We need to encourage the public to continue to report suspicious activity.”

Dickson points out his Office is in contact with “not only the federal Department of Homeland Security but also the FBI, here in New Jersey, and the Joint Terrorism Task Force with the state police – we have an array of partners that we speak with, that we exchange information with and if there’s anything that looks suspicious – that needs to be elevated- we’re in constant contact with our partners on that issue.”

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