FBI Opens Their Doors for Community Training Seminar

By Camaron Abundes   
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND- It's not all shoot outs and car chases, even dusting for fingerprints takes longer in real life than in Tinseltown.

"It's fascinating to see that sort of thing," Art Hobbs, a banker at West Texas National, said after going through the FBI Community Relations Executive Seminar on Friday. "There is obviously an element on television you see. That's not quite reality. So you can come out here and see the real deal."

The Midland office under the El Paso Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigations welcomed community leaders and business people for a rare look at some real Crime Scene Investigations or CSI.

"Just to get our name out the community, get the FBI brand out in the community, letting people know they can trust us they can come to us and talk to us and we will do the job we are appointed to do," David Cuthbertson, Special Agent In Charge of the El Paso Division, explained why the FBI hosted the event.

In the Permian Basin, the FBI's job often means safeguarding big pipelines or oil rigs.

"Protecting the industry that really drives the economy in this area," Cuthbertson said the Oil Field Theft Task Force that started last year is helping to prevent millions of dollars in theft.

"We're [also] looking at public corruption to make sure elected officials are using your tax dollars for the public good and not for the private good and also things like drug trafficking and mostly just letting people know the FBI is here," Cuthbertson said.

The agency is looking to hire 900 special agents Nationwide in 2010. The starting pay is around $50,000 annually but there is a lengthy hiring process including intense fitness exams and lie detector tests.

"It's important to know these sorts of things about what the FBI does and what they're all about how they work with the community and the impact they have," Hobbs said.