Special Agent (Ret) Heath Gross Tapped to Lead TF1621.ORG, a Civilian Intelligence Task Force Created In Response to Potential Acts of Domestic Terrorism Following the Events of January 6th
January 15, 2021
Washington, D.C. – Heath Gross, a retired Counterintelligence Special Agent that lead counterterrorism operations post 9/11, has been selected to lead TF1621, a civilian intelligence task force (TF) comprised of veteran government and military intelligence professionals. TF1621 was created in response to the increased threat of acts of violence and domestic terrorism following the occupation of the Capitol that occurred on January 6th, 2021.
“I first worked with Special Agent Gross back in 2002 when he was serving as the Special Projects Officer of HUMINT counterterrorism operations in Kuwait,” said TF1621’s co-founder, Lt. Col Hicks (Ret). “Prior to 9/11 Gross had co-authored the Fort Bragg Terrorism Threat Response Plan, and by the time he arrived in Kuwait he was one of the most experienced counterterrorism officers we had on the ground. I can say with confidence that the work Gross and his team did in Kuwait played an instrumental role in bringing that chapter in American history to a close. I am confident this team will play an equally important role in what we believe is currently the greatest threat to our national security.”
Gross will serve as the interim Task Force leader and technical consultant. TF1621 leverages OSINT (Open Source Intelligence) and data analytics to support the investigation into potential acts of violence and domestic terrorism. In addition to using traditional intelligence analytical tools, TF1621 is supported by RivalAnalytics, a private data science company. RivalAnalytics is using machine learning, neurolinguistics, and sentiment analysis to sift through millions of social media and chat room posts to identify and evaluate credible threats of violence against US persons and property.
“I am honored to lead this incredible group of intelligence veterans, but obviously I would much rather it not be necessary. However, it’s not a question of what I want to be doing right now, it’s a matter of duty to my country and the Constitution I swore to defend against all enemies, foreign and domestic. That is the job I signed up for 20 years ago, that hasn’t changed,” says Gross.
“The response from the intelligence community has been overwhelming. I am greatly encouraged by the sheer number and experience of individuals that are willing and eager to assist our federal law enforcement agencies in protecting our citizens,” says Gross.
“Our state and federal agencies are stretched pretty thin,” says Hicks. “TF1621 was set up as a temporary task force to support the incredibly important work they are doing. For every active duty counterterrorism agent in the field today, there are 10 experienced retired agents sitting at home wondering how they can help. This is their opportunity.”
Gross has supported multiple federal and local investigations as a technical consultant. Most recently, he worked on the investigation into the killing of Breonna Taylor by police last March in Louisville, KY.
TF1621 is asking veteran intelligence professionals interested in supporting the investigation to contact the organization via email or through the website (www.TF1621.org). If you have information to report regarding suspicious persons or activities, please contact the FBI or your local law enforcement agencies directly.