Local law enforcement responds after President says 'Don't be to - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Local law enforcement responds after President says 'Don't be too nice'

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HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

Local law enforcement agencies are responding to President Trump’s remarks to police and crime victims in Long Island, New York. The President said officers are too careful in their treatment of people in custody.

Since those remarks were made, law enforcement agencies around the country flooded social media explaining their stance on community policing.

"You just see them thrown in rough. I said please don't be too nice,” President Trump explained to the crowd.

It's that comment that has some law enforcement agencies defending their policy. Some said the remarks encouraged police to be more violent when handling criminals.

"Like when you guys put somebody in the car and you're protecting their head. You know? The way you put their hand over-like don't hit their head and they've just killed somebody, don't hit their head. I said you can take the hand away ok?” President Trump said.

Sunday, Chattanooga Police Department and Deputy Chief David Roddy addressed the comments in a memo to his staff encouraging officers to uphold their oath to treat all members of our community with dignity and respect.


The Hamilton County Sheriff's Office echoed that, but doesn't think the President was encouraging violence.

"I don't think he meant anything by that. I think he was just saying look folks, police go out of their way in their training to practice human rights and dignity and I believe that,” Sheriff Jim Hammond said.

Sheriff Hammond said his deputies have a process called force continuum, meaning they apply enough force to effect compliance.

"We only raise our level of force based on what is compliance. So the sooner they comply, the less force we're gonna use,” Sheriff Hammond said.

Unlike the police department, no memo will be sent out to deputies. Sheriff Hammond said doing what's right is something they discuss daily.

"If we have an officer that is going out of his way to use the wrong kind of force, he's going to end up in IA,” Sheriff Hammond said.

Sheriff Hammond said his deputies go through a minimum 40 hours of training each year where they hone in on their skills on human rights and dignity. 

The ACLU Tennessee Executive Director, Hedy Weinberg had this response to President Trump's comment:

“By encouraging police to dole out extra pain at will, the president is urging a lawlessness that already threatens the health and lives of people of color at shameful rates. President Trump’s ominous words suggest he supports aggressive and violent policing and we are grateful that law enforcement across the country are speaking out against his message. We have seen time and time again that this type of policing makes it harder for law enforcement to investigate crimes and decimates community trust in the agencies that are supposed to protect and serve all of us.”

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