In the wake of President Donald Trump’s remarks last Friday seemingly encouraging police officers to be “rough” with arrestees, many law enforcement agencies locally and across the country were quick to rebuke his comments, which were made while he was giving a speech to a room full of police recruits at Suffolk Community College in Brentwood, N.Y.
The president’s speech focused on immigration and gang violence in the United States.
He also seemingly called for police and immigration officers to be “rough” when handling suspected gang members in custody.
“Please don’t be too nice,” Trump said. “Like when you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head, you know the way you put the hand … like don’t hit their head and they just killed somebody, don’t hit their head … You can take the hand away.”
Trump’s comments elicited applause from a large group of police recruits who were standing behind him throughout the speech.
The Suffolk County Police Department took to Twitter shortly after the president gave his speech and said the department has strict rules when handling prisoners and said officials there “do not and will not tolerate roughing up prisoners.”
The White House has since defended the president’s remarks as a joke.
When asked about Trump’s speech, an official with the Glendale Police Department said it “prides itself as a professional organization [that] treats all members of our community with respect; including those who are in our custody,” said Sgt. Robert William, a spokesman with Glendale police, in an email.
He added that the…
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