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World Trade Center head of security resigns

Comes after two breaches at the site, which is overseen by multiple security forces and hundreds of personnel

A spokesman for the New York City company that manages 1 World Trade Center says the building's head of security has resigned.

The departure of David Velazquez comes just days after the arrests of three skydiving enthusiasts who in September parachuted off the building, the nation's tallest skyscraper, and about two weeks after authorities say a New Jersey teenager sneaked onto the site undetected and climbed to the top of the 1,776-foot tower to take pictures.

The Durst Organization, a New York real estate firm, controls security for the tower, while the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is responsible for the larger site.

Neither Port Authority nor Durst could be reached for comment on Saturday, and the reason for Velazquez’s departure remains unclear, but it comes after weeks of pundits and politicians questioning the efficacy of the storied site’s security.

On Monday, news broke that three BASE jumping enthusiasts were able to enter the site and parachute off the roof in September without being detected for some time. They were arrested this week, just days after a New Jersey teenager was accused of unlawfully entering the site, eluding an inattentive security guard and spending about two hours atop the 1,776-foot-tall tower to take pictures.

And on Tuesday, Port Authority police arrested two CNN producers, accusing them of trying to breach security at the site. Police spokesman Joe Pentangelo said Yon Pomrenze and Connor Fieldman Boals tried to enter a gate leading into the lower Manhattan site at about 2 p.m. Tuesday, but were stopped by an officer.

The NYPD devotes more than 200 officers, surveillance cameras and other technology to protect the perimeter of the site, while Port Authority police and private security agents guard the inside. Ultimately, plans call for a $40 million system of barriers and checkpoints around the 16-acre trade center site.

Security has been a concern since the original Twin Towers were taken down in the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said earlier this month that the city wanted to "deepen" its coordination with Port Authority police to address the situation. "It's obviously not an acceptable state of affairs but we think it's one that together that we can resolve," he said.

Wire services

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