Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck stated Monday that he will not change the Los Angeles Police Department’s stance on the deportation of illegal immigrants despite President-elect Donald Trump’s plan for stronger federal immigration laws.
“I don’t intend on doing anything different,” Beck told the Los Angeles Times. “We are not going to engage in law enforcement activities solely based on somebody’s immigration status. We are not going to work in conjunction with Homeland Security on deportation efforts. That is not our job, nor will I make it our job.”
The LA times reports that over the years, the LAPD has distanced itself from federal immigration laws. A special order mandated by the LAPD chief in 1979 prohibits officers from initiating contact with someone solely to determine whether he or she is in the country legally.
During Beck’s time as chief, the LAPD stopped turning low-level criminal illegals into federal agents for deportation.
In addition, Beck’s department chooses not to honor federal requests to detain deportable inmates past their jail terms.
“This is the same LAPD you had Monday, a week ago. We have not changed because of the election on Tuesday. We have the same principles. We have the same values,” says Beck. “This is not going to change the way that the Los Angeles Police Department enforces the law.”
According to the Migration Policy Institute, more than 1 million of the 11 million illegals in the US live in Los Angeles County. Following Trump’s victory, many of these illegal immigrants now face deportation.
At a Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights meeting on Friday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti stated that the city “would question Trump’s decisions on immigration.”
“If the first day, as president, we see something that is hostile to our people, hostile to our city, bad for our economy, bad for our security, we will speak up, speak out, act up and act out,” Garcetti threatened.
Garcetti also stated that the LAPD will still enforce Special Order 40 — an order that bars officers from contacting someone solely to determine their immigration status.
“Our law enforcement officers and LAPD don’t go around asking people for their papers, nor should they,” said Garcetti. “That’s not the role of local law enforcement.”
According to the LA Times, Beck’s command staff has been meeting with leaders in the community to discuss their concerns surrounding immigration enforcement.