Omaha's FBI head no stranger to city

Randy Thysse The special agent in charge of the Omaha division began his career probing whitecollar crime.

Omaha's new FBI leader has already met with officials in his first two days on the job — but some are friendly faces.

Randy Thysse was named special agent in charge in December, but he had spent nearly nine years serving the Omaha division, which covers Nebraska and Iowa, 25 years ago in Des Moines.

Thysse, 53, said he's ready to make new friends but also reconnect with long-lost acquaintances whom he worked with in the '90s.

During his first two to three months, he'll be meeting with special agents to determine the major crime threats and outline goals for the Omaha division.

Crime has shifted greatly since 9/11, Thysse said, and can also vary depending on the economy.

"As the economy ebbs and flows, so does crime and what the threat is," he said. "We have to make sure that we're always applying our resources correctly to match what those threats are."

Although he started his career in the Omaha division specializing in white-collar crime, Thysse said he had to help cover robberies and kidnappings, which gave him "street cred" with future partners. Thysse later worked in Washington, D.C.; Helena, Montana; the Memphis division; New York field office, and most recently, Clarksburg, West Virginia, where he oversaw crime reduction and terrorism prevention initiatives.

Thysse said he's committed to working with other agencies.

In December, 13 people were arrested in a yearlong drug investigation called Operation Red Rising, which required resources from the Omaha Police Department, Nebraska State Patrol, FBI and other agencies.

"I make it a conscious effort to break that stereotype from movies, 'FBI's here to take over the case.'" Thysse said. "It's not like that at all, we're here to work in partnership together. There's way too much work to be territorial."

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