Experts explain how the public can help prevent terror acts

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – The series of deadly mass shootings has sent shockwaves across the nation and it appears as if these incidents are on the rise.

KRON4’s Dan Kerman spoke with terror experts about how the public can help stop these acts of terror before they happen.

“Based on the trends we’re seeing, I don’t believe that we’re going to have any reprieve in the type of activities that are going on right now,” Mike Sena said.

Mike Sena runs the Northern California Regional Intelligence Center, one of dozens across the country charged with identifying threats before they happen.  

“Our goal is to keep people safe,” Sena said.

Sena says whether domestic terrorism tied to an ideology or simply mass murder, the incidents this weekend or indicative of a frightening trend.

“We’re seeing, especially youth and especially younger adults that are for whatever reason picking up arms, picking up weapons and harming others,” Sena said.

Sena says the public must start playing a greater role in stopping these sorts of attacks by letting law enforcement know about potential threats. 

“Time is of the essence, attacks are happening now in a matter of days. People are making decisions in minutes if they are taking a gun out of a trunk or wherever it may be. Or they’re going to ram people and run them over in seconds. But there were things ahead of time that we always run into or almost always run into, where people say, you know what I knew this was going to happen or he told me something ahead of time or she told me something ahead of time and that’s the type of info that’s critical to us,” Sena said.

The Regional Intelligence Center also has an anonymous tip site, where you can report suspicious activity.

The site even lists many of the things to look out for

“Those that are withdrawing from everything in their society, those that are just showing a disdain, and especially if those folks are trying to acquire weapons or supplies. Trying to learn and train tactics, trying to acquire body armor, trying to get ammunition, things like that,” Sena said.

In many cases, you will never find out the motive but authorities say many times there is a red flag days weeks or hours in advance and it’s incumbent on the public to report it. 

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