Washington, DC - Patrick Yoes, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, expressed his strong support for yesterday’s announcement that President Trump will be expanding Operation Legend and provide much needed assistance and manpower in jurisdictions where violent crime is raging out of control.
“Law enforcement and the maintenance of public safety is primarily the responsibility of local governments,” Yoes explained. “But in too many of our cities, the violence has reached such levels that local agencies need additional resources. Our men and women in uniform in these jurisdictions are demoralized by anti-police rhetoric and they are exhausted from lengthy shifts in response to the pandemic. They desperately need the help that the President is going to provide.”
The President announced that Federal law enforcement officers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will deploy Federal assets to Chicago, which is experiencing an unprecedented wave of criminal violence. The operation will be based on the successful model used in Kansas City, which used a “surge” of Federal officers to quell the skyrocketing violence and restore order.
“I know that things can’t continue as they are,” Yoes said. “We are looking at a perfect storm in too many of our cities—a crisis of confidence in our law enforcement agencies and a significant lack of morale in our police departments—all of it driven by increasingly divisive rhetoric.”
As of 19 July, 414 people have been murdered in Chicago this year, an increase of 51% from this time last year. On the last weekend of May, Chicago experienced its most violent weekend in modern history with 25 people killed and another 85 shot. Just this week, there was a mass shooting at a funeral for a murder victim that left 15 people wounded by gunfire.
“Our citizens should not have to live in fear and should not have to accept the current level of violence as the ‘new normal’,” Yoes continued. “We are proud of the President for his leadership, his support for law enforcement and his actions to ensure that our communities are safe from violence.”
The Fraternal Order of Police is the largest law enforcement labor organization in the United States, with more than 354,000 members.