USS Mahan gunman’s use of TWIC card questioned

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — New details from the recent shooting at Naval Station Norfolk have called into question the use of a Transportation Worker Identification Credential, or TWIC card, by the gunman when he gained access to the base.

A federal source tells WAVY.com that Jeffery Savage either flashed the TWIC at the gate and it was never examined, or that Savage indicated he wanted to make a U-turn in his truck just past at the gate and kept going before he attempted to board the USS Mahan.

Navy officials say a struggle then ensued as he was confronted, and Savage was able to gain control of the weapon held by a petty officer of the watch. That weapon was used to kill Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Mark Mayo on the night of March 24. Security forces responding to reports of shots fired then killed Savage.

Congress is investigating past problems with the TWIC program. This week, Senator Mark Warner told a committee the program should have stricter background checks.

“Out of the more than two million people who have been issued a TWIC card, only three people have ever stepped up and self reported that they’ve committed a crime after they’ve been issued that card,” he said to the committee.

Court documents obtained by WAVY.com show Savage had a criminal history, including a manslaughter conviction in North Carolina in 2008.

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