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DEA Chief Says President Trump ‘Condoned Police Misconduct’

In a memo covered this week by the Wall Street Journal, Chuck Rosenberg, the acting director of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), broke sharply with President Donald Trump following Trump’s comments last Friday:

“When you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon — you just see them thrown in, rough — I said, please don’t be too nice. Like when you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head, you know, the way you put their hand over? Like, don’t hit their head and they’ve just killed somebody — don’t hit their head. I said, you can take the hand away, OK?”

In a memo sent to DEA staff, Rosenberg said President Trump had “condoned police misconduct regarding the treatment of individuals placed under arrest by law enforcement” and felt obligated. Rosenberg reminded staff of the “core values” agents are expected to uphold: rule of law, respect and compassion, service, devotion, integrity, accountability, leadership and courage and diversity.  

"This is how we conduct ourselves. This is how we treat those whom we encounter in our work: victims, witnesses, subjects and defendants. This is who we are,” Rosenberg wrote in the memo.

President Trumps comments were widely panned, but Rosenberg’s memo to staff represented the first such display from federal law enforcement ranks.

Both White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions indicated they believed President Trump’s claim that he intended the comments in jest.

Rosenberg wrote that his memo was not intended to advance any “political, partisan, or personal agenda,” but instead “to offer a strong reaffirmation of the operating principles to which we, as law enforcement professionals, adhere. I write because we have an obligation to speak out when something is wrong. That's what law enforcement officers do. That's what you do. We fix stuff. At least, we try.”



Posted in General News

Tags: DEA, DOJ, Donald Trump


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