Some of U.S.’s most secretive work will be done in new NASIC building

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 12:58 PM

Huge hangar built at Wright-Patterson for study of foreign weapons

Tucked away off the main airfield and near a remote area of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, researchers will conduct some of the most secretive work of the spying agency in a new 58,000-square-foot building.

The massive $29.5 million National Air and Space Intelligence Center expansion was dedicated Friday, giving analysts a more technically advanced and much larger area to dissect adversaries weapons technology, officials say.

RELATED: Stealth bombers, test pilots, UFO rumors among Wright Patt’s first 100 years

“It’s a very hands-on mission, ” said Col. Sean P. Larkin, NASIC commander, who noted the foreign technology work began at the Army’s airplane engineering department at the old McCook Field in Dayton a century ago in 1917.

“We have a long heritage of doing this for 100 years,” he said. “Although we have great scientists, technicians and engineers whose secret weapon is math and who can fill in missing puzzle pieces using the laws of physics, it’s still incredibly helpful and insightful to have the hands-on access and exploitation of foreign weapon systems. We can learn from those and plow that back into our analysis.”

“If you really want to know what keeps the Air Force competitive, this is a big part of it right here,” said Maj. Gen. James R. Marrs, Air Force assistant deputy chief of staff for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. The two-star general spoke to more than 200 people at a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday.

PHOTOS: 100 years of amazing science at Wright-Patterson

‘Staying ahead’ of China, Russia

“We’re staying ahead of our adversaries as China and Russia look to challenge the United States dominance,” said U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, a House Armed Services Committee member. “This is a facility that allows us to understand what our adversaries are doing (and) ensuring we’re staying ahead.”

NASIC advises the nation’s highest leaders on air, space and cyber threats, including assessments of adversaries ballistic missile capabilities, such as North Korea.

“It is no exaggeration to say that the assessments NASIC generates can make the difference between war and peace,” said Loren B. Thompson, a Virginia-based senior defense analyst at the Lexington Institute, said in an email Friday. “NASIC not only analyzes what weapons an enemy has, but what weapons it is seeking to acquire, when those weapons will become available, and how they might be used.”

The intelligence agency has more than 3,100 employees and a budget of about $430 million.

Seventy employees will relocate into the new Haynes Hall — nearly tripling the size of the current facility which will double lab space — in early 2018, Larkin said. The current facility was meant to house 20 employees, but has three and half times that today.

The new addition will help secure NASIC’s future at Wright-Patterson, particularly as the Pentagon and congressional leaders have in recent weeks urged a new round of base closures and mission re-alignments, some said.

Congressional backing to build the expanded center quickly under an emergency funding provision showed “very strong support” for NASIC, said Michael Gessel, Dayton Development Coalition vice president of federal programs.

RELATED: More jobs coming to Wright-Patterson, officials say

“Those opportunities are there, and the outlook is good, but the defense and intelligence worlds are increasingly uncertain,” he said in a telephone interview from Arlington, Va. “I would say that the need for intelligence and the need for the work that NASIC does has never been greater and the work will have to be done and the work is expanding.”

The coalition worked with congressional lawmakers to secure the money, said Jeff Hoagland, DDC president and chief executive officer.

‘Flabbergasted, speechless’

The new building, dubbed Haynes Hall, is named after Foreign Materiels Exploitation test pilot Lt. William V. Haynes, a World War II aviator who died at Freeman Field, Ind., flying a demonstration of a German Focke-Wulf Fw 109D-9 fighter plane in front of aeronautical experts in September 1945, according to NASIC.

Haynes’nephew, Ed Bishop, 68, of Niceville, Fla, traveled to Wright-Patterson to see the building named after the uncle he never met.

“I was just flabbergasted, speechless,” the Air Force veteran said, when he learned it would be named for Haynes. “I was in tears … I thought it was going to be a little building off a hallway. I come to see this, it’s massive.”

The building is next to Watson Hall, named after Maj. Gen. Harold E. Watson, who was in charge of Operation LUSTY in 1945. That mission flew enemy aircraft to Wright Field in Dayton to find the secrets the planes held.

Haynes was among seven Army P-47 aviators, dubbed “Watson’s Whizzers” who flew captured Messerschmitt Me262 fighter jets from Germany to Cherbourg, France at the end of World War II in Europe. The planes were put on an aircraft carrier and shipped to Newark, N.J.

Roy W. Brown, 96, of Chillicothe, is the last surviving member of the group. Standing in NASIC’s new hangar Friday, he recalled piloting the German jet.

“We knew when we went into it that we were getting into something we’d never been in before and once we found it was flying the (German) planes, it was very interesting,” the retired Goodyear engineer said. “It was an easier plane to fly. It was more quiet and more responsive to the controls and it would do whatever you wanted it to do better than a P-47.”

NASIC’s new facility

The National Air and Space Intelligence Center will open a new Foreign Materiel Exploitation facility at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Here are a few facts about the new building and NASIC.

Name: Haynes Hall

Cost: $29.5 million

Size: 58,000 square feet

NASIC budget: $30 million

NASIC employees: 3,100

Dayton traffic from the WHIO Traffic Center

Published: Tuesday, November 21, 2017 @ 3:56 AM
Updated: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 2:30 PM

Staff photo
Staff photo

Check this page for a full list of crashes, disabled vehicles, construction projects and other hazards impacting your commute.

Traffic issues can be reported by calling our newsroom at 937-259-2237 or tweeting @WHIOTraffic .

Traffic conditions are updated every six minutes on AM 1290 and News 95.7 FM.

RELATED: Find the lowest gas prices in your neighborhood with our Pump Patrol

Major Highway Incidents

  • No incidents have been reported. 

Surface Street Incidents

  • No incidents have been reported. 

>> RELATED: Check for delays or cancellations before heading to the airport

>> RELATED: Track the latest conditions in your neighborhood on our live WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Ongoing Construction & Other Closures 

Live look at highways on our traffic cameras here.

Latest traffic conditions are also available on our traffic map. 

MONTGOMERY COUNTY

  • Alex-Bell Road will be closed for work on the Washington Twp. bridge over Holes Creek until Nov. 30. More information, including detour information, is available here.
  • Stewart Street Ramp to US 35 East, RAMP CLOSURE March 28 - Sept 30, 2018. The official detour is: Stewart Street to Edwin C. Moses Boulevard to I-75 north to US 35 west to James H. McGee Blvd. to US 35 east
  • US 35 west ramps to I-75 north and south, RAMP CLOSURE Nov. 30 at 10 p.m. - Dec. 1 at 5 a.m. The official detour is: US 35 west to James H. McGee Boulevard to US 35 east to I-75 north and south 

DARKE COUNTY 

  • SR 705 near Groff Road, Daily lane closures Nov. 27 - Dec. 11 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. One lane will remain open for travel in each direction through the use of flaggers.
SHELBY COUNTY  
  • SR 29 between Cisco Road and West Russell Road, Daily lane closures Nov. 27 - Jan. 1 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. One lane will be open for travel in each direction through the use of flaggers. 

Trump tweets he 'took a pass' at being named Time's person of the year

Published: Saturday, November 25, 2017 @ 1:34 AM

President Donald Trump said he
President Donald Trump said he "took a pass" at being named Time's Person of the Year.(NurPhoto/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

President Donald Trump tweeted Friday that he “took a pass” at being named Time magazine’s “Person of the Year,” but the company’s chief content officer said there “wasn’t a speck of truth” in the president’s social media comment, CNN reported.

>> Read more trending news

“Time Magazine called to say that I was PROBABLY going to be named ‘Man (Person) of the Year’ like last year, but I would have to agree to an interview and a major photo shoot,” Trump tweeted from his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida, where he is spending his Thanksgiving holiday. “I said probably is no good and took a pass. Thanks anyway!” Trump wrote. 

The magazine issued a statement that disputed the President’s tweet, CNN reported.

“The President is incorrect about how we choose Person of the Year. TIME does not comment on our choice until publication, which is December 6,” the magazine wrote on its Twitter feed.

Time Inc.’s chief content officer, Alan Murray, tweeted that the President's tweet didn't have “a speck of truth.”

“Amazing. Not a speck of truth here — Trump tweets he 'took a pass' at being named TIME's person of the year,” Murray tweeted.

The President was named Time’s “person of the year” in 2016 after his victory over Hillary Clinton. 

Man in stable condition after motorcycle crash in Greene County

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 10:50 PM

UPDATE @ 12:55 a.m: One man is in stable condition at Miami Valley Hospital after being flown by a medical helicopter from a motorcycle crash on Jasper Road Friday evening.

LOCAL NEWS: 18-year-old pedestrian killed in Warren County; driver thought he hit a deer

The incident occurred around 10:40 p.m.

According to The Ohio Highway State Patrol, the individual has a few broken bones and is expected to recover.

INITIAL REPORT

A medical helicopter has been called to a motorcycle crash on Jasper Road this evening.

Emergency crews responded to the 2800 block of Jasper around 10:40 p.m.

Initial reports indicated at least one person was injured.

We’re working to learn more.

Florida teen in custody at border, is ‘person of interest’ in grandmother’s death

Published: Saturday, November 25, 2017 @ 1:05 AM

Tyler Logan Mott, left, and his grandmother, Kristina June French, had been missing since Monday, officials said.
ActionNewsJax.com
Tyler Logan Mott, left, and his grandmother, Kristina June French, had been missing since Monday, officials said.(ActionNewsJax.com)

A 15-year-old Florida teen is in custody at the U.S.-Canada border, hours after police discovered the body of a woman believed to be his missing grandmother in a shallow grave near the boy’s home, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office reported.

Logan Tyler Mott was detained by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection as he tried to enter Canada from Buffalo, New York, sheriff’s deputies said.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office had called Mott “armed and dangerous” and a person of interest in the death of his grandmother, 53-year-old Kristina June French.

Mott was being watched by French at her Neptune Beach home while his father, a Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office corrections officer, was on vacation.

Mott’s mother, Carrie Campbell-Mott, said the boy’s father, Eric Mott, was on vacation with his girlfriend. Eric Mott took an Uber home from the airport Wednesday after French never showed up to get them, Campbell-Mott said.

When they got home, the door to their home was open and the house was ransacked, Campbell-Mott said.

Eric Mott's guns were missing from a gun safe, Campbell-Mott said. French’s home in the Mayport area also was ransacked. Her weapons were gone, along with her Dodge Dart.

Mott and French were reported missing after Logan didn't show up to high school on Monday or Tuesday. French also didn't show up for work Monday or Tuesday. A warrant was issued for his arrest Thursday on a charge of auto theft, deputies said.

Originally, deputies believed that Tyler Mott and French may have been traveling together in the Dodge Dart. A missing child alert was issued by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

The teen and the missing vehicle were spotted Thursday on surveillance video in south central Pennsylvania, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office reported.

In a statement, Campbell-Mott she was “relieved” that her son was in custody.

“We just ask for everyone to give us time to sort out what happened,” Campbell-Mott said. “That no matter what, Logan is our child and we love him and are standing by him to help in any way. We want to find out what happened to Kristina and we need time for that to happen.”

Campbell-Mott said a sheriff’s detective will fly to meet Logan on Saturday.

In a statement, the May Institute, a nonprofit organization that employed French, said it was “truly devastated” to learn of her death.

“Kristina was a friend and a role model to so many people. … She was a true champion for people with disabilities and advocated tirelessly for human rights.

“We have lost a beautiful person and she will be dearly missed. It is a very sad day.”