The letters were sent to the police chiefs of Baltimore, Stockton, San Bernardino and Albuquerque, marking the latest salvo in Donald Trump's attempted crackdown on jurisdictions that limit how much local police and sheriff officials comply with federal immigration agents.
Stockton officials said the city will not change its policies toward undocumented immigrants following U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions' announcement Thursday morning that cities will not receive resources from a federal public safety program unless they cooperate with federal immigration enforcement.
"I just think it's unfortunate when a topic like violent crime gets politicized", Jones said. Compounding the confusion, Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones said he had only learned about the request through the media. An Aug. 3 letter to the county from acting Assistant Attorney General Alan Hanson says "no evidence" was found to show Clark County is out of compliance with federal immigration law. "By taking simple, common-sense considerations into account, we are encouraging every jurisdiction in this country to cooperate with federal law enforcement".
"Baltimore is a welcoming city". Instead, he said the legislation, which he has not decided whether to support, would prevent law enforcement in California from abetting "abuse of federal power". We do not ask people questions about their immigration status. Opponents argue the federal government is essentially trying to deputize local law enforcement and that everyday policing is made more hard when people are afraid to talk to the officers for fear their immigration status will be uncovered.
Stockton has not proclaimed itself a sanctuary city, police spokesman Joe Silva said.
Mr. Jones noted that his officers did not as a matter of policy stop and question anyone to potentially detain them based on their potential immigration status. Those individuals arrested by the Police Department are booked and lodged into the custody of the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. And, like Mr. Davis, he appeared skeptical of an overly harsh approach to policing and immigrants. "The principled policing pillar is about treating everyone fairly and equitably, and we have to balance that always, so we would want to make sure everything's consistent with that". The San Bernardino Police Department accepted the invitation to join in the discussion.