Trump imitates Dayton shooting during first visit to Chicago as president: 'Boom boom boom'

'Get them the hell out of our country': The president attacks 'sanctuary' cities in a speech to police chiefs 

Alex Woodward
New York
Monday 28 October 2019 20:25 GMT
Donald Trump mimics police killing Dayton mass shooter during speech

Donald Trump has mimicked officers killing a mass shooter in Dayton, Ohio who murdered nine people with a semi-automatic rifle in August.

"Boom, boom, boom", the president said. "They were out there. Perfect. There was no fear. There was no anything. They reacted."

During his first visit to Chicago as president, Mr Trump called himself law enforcement's "greatest and most loyal champion" while accusing that city's police chief of putting "criminals and illegal aliens before the city of Chicago" in his call for an end to so-called "sanctuary cities" that he says are knowingly releasing jailed immigrants accused of violent crime.

At his speech to the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference and Exposition on Monday, Mr Trump said Chicago Chief Eddie Johnson is "not doing his job" in a city that the president has often ridiculed as a "war zone" for its high murder rate. There have been 425 homicides in Chicago so far this year.

Chicago is "embarrassing to us as a nation" and "Afghanistan is a safe place by comparison", he said.

Mr Johnson is boycotting the president's visit, saying, "We are nothing without trust and with some of our communities under siege, it just doesn't line up with our city's core values along with my personal values."

Mr Trump also brought up actor Jussie Smollett, who was charged with filing a false report to Chicago police after staging a hate crime, and compared Smollett's "scam" to the impeachment probe investigating the president.

"He said 'MAGA country' did it, OK? That's a hate crime. And it's a scam. It's a real big scam. Just like the impeachment of your president is a scam", Mr Trump said.

The president called Chicago the "worst sanctuary city in America" and repeated his assertion that undocumented immigrants are responsible for rates of violent crime across the US, despite no evidence that people living in the country illegally contributed to the city's high murder rate. Mr Trump has previously made the spurious claim that "63,000" people were murdered by people living in the country illegally since 2001, seemingly to boost support for an aggressive border protection plan.

"Get 'em the hell out of our country and bring them home, let them take care of them," Mr Trump told police. "Countries love sending their worst to us. They don't have to bother with them."

He claimed "sanctuary" laws are enabling the release of "thousands" of undocumented immigrants after they've committed violent crimes, including Paulo Virgen Mendoza, who was arrested for the shooting death of California police officer Ronil Singh in 2018. Mr Mendoza was not in police custody following unrelated DUI charges prior to the murder, but he remained in custody following the killing of Mr Singh.

Mr Trump said his administration will have in place 500 miles of a wall along the US-Mexico border by the end of 2020, which he claims is "going up at a rapid pace". The administration has replaced 69 miles of existing barriers.

In his address, Mr Trump also claimed that "a lot of elections are being lost because of sanctuary cities" and cited two recent Republican elections in North Carolina, as well as a governor's race runoff in Louisiana, as examples, despite neither of those states having any "sanctuary" municipalities.

He also suggested ending consent decrees between the US Department of Justice and local police, agreements that have aimed to fix civil rights issues and other institutional concerns in police departments across the US.

Mr Trump called those agreements "harmful and intrusive" to police and blamed them "on "meddlesome officials in DC".

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His visit comes a day after announcing the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who the president described to police as "dead as a doornail" after detonating a vest bomb, killing himself and three children in an underground tunnel at a compound in Syria on Saturday.

Mr Trump did not bring up the 2014 Chicago police killing of 17-year-old Laquan Macdonald and the ensuing cover-up that involved at least 16 officers, recently revealed in documents released by Mayor Lori Lightfoot's administration.

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