Biden Ignores Laken Riley’s Murder In Crime Speech

[Photo Credit: Screenshot | White House]

Reagan Reese White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden failed to mention the recent death of an Augusta University nursing student, allegedly killed by an illegal immigrant, while giving a speech on his efforts to address crime across the country.

Biden gave an unexpected address on “his Actions to Fight Crime and Make Our Communities Safer” on Wednesday, emphasizing that “public safety and crime reduction” are a top priority for him and his administration. Despite Biden’s emphasis on public safety, he ignored the recent death of Laken Riley, a 22-year-old former University of Georgia student, who was allegedly killed by Jose Antonio Ibarra, an illegal immigrant from Venezuela. (RELATED: ‘Joe Biden, You’re Wrong’: CNN Panelists Urge Democrats To ‘Be More Aggressive’ On Crime)

Riley’s friends reported her missing Thursday after she failed to return from a run on campus, The New York Times reported. The 22-year-old was found by university police in a patch of forest by a lake with “visible injuries” and was unconscious and not breathing. Jeffrey Clark, the chief of university police, said Riley died of “blunt force trauma.”

On Monday, Maryland police charged another illegal immigrant, 25-year-old Nilson Trejo-Granados of El Salvador, with the murder of a 2-year-old who, along with his mother, was caught in a cross-fire between several suspects. During his time in the U.S., Trejo-Granados reportedly developed a rap sheet and was even ordered out of the country by a DOJ immigration judge in Newark, New Jersey, in November 2022.

The alleged murders have sparked backlash to Biden’s handling of the border crisis as migrant encounters at the U.S.-Mexico border hit record highs. During December, Customs and Border Protection logged more than 300,000 migrant encounters at the southern border, the highest month on record. January 2024 notched the highest migrant encounters in comparison to previous months on record.

Following his remarks, Biden took several questions from the press on his annual checkup at Walter Reed Hospital and the news that Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell would be stepping down from his leadership position. The president was not asked, nor did he use the time, to talk about Riley’s death.

Earlier Wednesday, former White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield urged Democrats to “be more aggressive” in addressing crime across the U.S., saying it would ultimately be “a good thing” for the party ahead of the 2024 election.

“It is tough for Democrats and I think it’s smart for Democrats to be more aggressive on it because people are feeling frightened now. I don’t subscribe to the mayor’s language. I don’t subscribe to the Trump vision of America as a decaying wasteland where packs of people are running wild, committing crime but it is true that people across the country, particularly in cities, are concerned about crime,” Bedingfield said.

“It is smart for Democrats to be more aggressive about it, to be more responsive to what people are feeling,” Bedingfield continued. “Where I think it gets dangerous is when you veer into the demagoguery and the bashing immigrants and making immigrants scapegoats know that, that I don’t believe is where the Democratic Party should be. But I do think taking on this issue of crime, being tougher, it is a good thing for Democrats and will run out to their effect.”