CHICAGO (AP) – Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson asked U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Thursday to send more federal prosecutors and federal law enforcement agents to the city to focus on gun crimes, but did not discuss whether Sessions would push for court enforcement of reforms of the beleaguered police force.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said after the 90-minute meeting Sessions had with Johnson and other police chiefs in Washington, D.C., that Sessions was “receptive to the idea that the federal government needs to take a more aggressive stance on taking on bad guys with guns,” but did not commit to anything specific.
Johnson also asked Sessions to establish in Chicago the kind of partnership that Denver and other cities have with the federal government that would allow the police department to access a massive database that helps investigators trace guns by analyzing shell casings found at crime scenes.
Guglielmi said that Johnson didn’t discuss comments President Donald Trump has made on Twitter that seemed to suggest he was in favor of bringing in federal troops to stem the tide of violence that resulted in 762 homicides last year and thousands more shooting incidents. Nor did they discuss whether Sessions would be in favor committing to a federal consent decree with Chicago that would allow for court enforcement of suggested reforms of the police department outlined in a scathing Justice Department report that was authorized by President Barack Obama and released shortly before Trump took office.
Sessions has declined to commit to a consent decree and has said he would “pull back” on civil rights probes of local police departments like the one in Chicago.
Guglielmi said Johnson is scheduled to meet today with Rod Rosenstein, President Trump’s nominee to serve as deputy attorney general.