DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - The Atlanta FBI Field Office director met with heads of several law enforcement agencies Friday to discuss their priorities.
James Comey said his agency’s number one concern is counter-terrorism.
The world is aware of what is happening in Syria and Iraq with the terrorist group known as ISIS.
Comey said that group is a direct threat to the United States.
He met with several Georgia law enforcement agencies including the Georgia State Patrol, Sandy Springs police and the Fulton County Sheriff's Office.
He said the FBI works closely with all these agencies to try and protect the American people from terrorism.
Together, they have been watching the images from Middle East where ISIS and ISIL forces have rampaged across Iraq and murdered American journalist Jim Foley.
“I don't need to remind the American people especially now with the horrific images of the savage murder of Jim Foley of the nature and quality of the people we are up against,” Comey said.
Comey said thousands of the terrorists actually come from Western Europe and North America, including U.S. citizens.
The FBI is trying to identify and track them, he said.
“Their going there is very worrisome because in going there; they make the worst kinds of relationships. They get the worst kind of training. That’s very bad. What’s worse is the prospect of their coming back,” Comey said.
Domestically, Comey says he has sent dozens of FBI agents to Ferguson, Missouri to help investigate the police-involved shooting death of Michael Brown.
That shooting sparked days of protests and riots.
“A bunch of my folks went door-to-door over the weekend to talk to folks to see if anybody might have seen something, and we're continuing to encourage people, if we didn't get a chance to knock on your door and you saw something, give us a call,” Comey said.
Comey said the FBI partners with local law enforcement because often it's a local deputy or police officer that can help them solve or prevent crimes.