Federal authorities accused three major US cities of 'anarchy' and will deprive them of funding
According to a post on the official websiteNew York, Portland and Seattle have been identified by the US Department of Justice as being prone to violence and property destruction.
According to the Department, such a characterization is a response to a presidential memorandum on a review of federal funding for state and local governments allowing anarchy, violence and destruction in American cities.
On September 21, the Department of Justice identified “three jurisdictions that tolerated violence and property destruction and refused to take reasonable steps to counter criminal activity: New York City; Portland, Oregon; Seattle, Washington ”. The department plans to supplement the list.
“When state and local leaders interfere with their law enforcement officials and agencies from doing their jobs, they endanger innocent citizens who deserve protection, including those trying to peacefully gather and protest,” said Attorney General William Barr. “We cannot allow federal taxes to be wasted when citizens' safety hangs in the balance. I hope that the cities identified today will change their course, become serious about fulfilling the primary function of government, and begin to protect their citizens. ”
Below are the criteria for evaluating each city:
- whether the city prohibits police from intervening to restore order during widespread or prolonged violence or destruction;
- Does a city deprive a city of law enforcement protection of an area or structure to which law enforcement officials have legal access but are formally denied access or are only allowed in exceptional circumstances (unless employees are there for a tactical solution to an incident that poses a threat to human safety or law enforcement officers);
- whether the city restricts or protects the police departments;
- whether the city refuses (unreasonably) to accept offers of law enforcement assistance from the federal government;
- any other related factors that the Attorney General deems important.
The Justice Department published facts that led to accusations of cities of conniving at anarchy and unrest.
- Shooting has increased in New York since looting and protests began (approximately May 28, 2020). In July 2020, the number of shootings increased from 88 to 244, which is 177% more than a year ago. In August - from 91 to 242, which is 166% more than the year before.
- As the city faced increasing unrest, gunfire and property damage, New York City Council cut $ 1 billion from NYPD's fiscal 2021 budget.
- The budget cuts have resulted in the cancellation of new police recruits, a reduction in overtime costs and the transfer of certain police functions, including school security, from the NYPD.
- District attorneys for Manhattan and Brooklyn declined to prosecute charges of hooliganism and unlawful assemblies following the protests, while district attorneys in Queens and the Bronx declined to prosecute other charges related to the protests.
- Both Mayor de Blasio and Governor Cuomo have flatly rejected federal law enforcement support.
- Portland has experienced 100 consecutive nights of protests, marred by vandalism, chaos and even killings.
- Violent individuals regularly set fires, threw shells at law enforcement officials and destroyed property. Many law enforcement officers were injured.
- In June and July, the number of shootings increased by more than 140% compared to the same period last year.
- In the midst of the violence, Portland City Council cut $ 15 million in police funding, eliminating 84 positions. This included a Firearms Reduction Unit, which is investigating the shootings, and several positions of the Police Emergency Response Team.
- In August, Portland Mayor Wheeler sent a letter to President Trump outright rejecting the administration's proposal for federal law enforcement to end violent protests.
- For nearly a month starting in June, the city of Seattle has allowed anarchists and activists to control six neighborhoods in the Capitol Hill area.
- Law enforcement agencies and firefighters were denied access to the site. The Seattle Police Department were ordered to leave their site in the area.
- Crimes against the person in the occupied neighborhoods rose 525% over the same period in the same area a year earlier, including the Mayor of Durcan's estimate.
- The protesters were allowed to occupy the territory for almost a month, during which time two teenagers were shot dead.
- Seattle City Council, Mayor Durcan and Washington Governor Jay Inslee have publicly denied federal involvement in law enforcement in Seattle.
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