Let’s raise the Time piece with her tomorrow.
Thanks for flagging. I just sent a note about the TIME Magazine request to interview the Mayor on this subject. The convo around this stuff keeps changing rapidly so just want to make sure there's time to prep so things like this don't catch us off-guard.
From: Michael Crowley <Michael.Crowley@cityofchicago.org>
Sent: Wednesday, August 5, 2020 5:57 PM
To: Patrick Mullane <Patrick.Mullane@cityofchicago.org>; Kate Lefurgy <Kate.LeFurgy@cityofchicago.org>; Anel Ruiz <Anel.Ruiz@cityofchicago.org>
Subject: FW: Duckworth, Durbin Demand Clarity from DOJ and DHS on Federal Agent Activity in Chicago
Mullane, for your awareness.
For your awareness, Senators Durbin and Duckworth sent a letter to DOJ and DHS about HIS’s involvement in Operation LeGend. Text of the letter is below (and noting for comms that they sent out publicly). This came as a result of your delegation briefing and request for vigilance and oversight.
Also, yesterday DOJ and DHS testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday and Sen. Durbin asked if HSI agents in Chicago would be under operational control of DOJ. The DOJ witness did not give an answer, but Ken Cuccinelli from DHS said that the HSI agents would not be performing immigration enforcement, but are rather focused on targeting international gangs.
You can see the clip at 1:33-1:35 mark here -- https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/meetings/the-right-of-the-people-peaceably-to-assemble-protecting-speech-by-stopping-anarchist-violence
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 5, 2020
Contact: Courtney Jacquin (Duckworth), Courtney_Jacquin@duckworth.senate.gov
Emily Hampsten (Durbin), Emily_Hampsten@durbin.senate.gov
Duckworth, Durbin Demand Clarity from DOJ and DHS on Federal Agent Activity in Chicago
[WASHINGTON, D.C.] –U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) are calling on the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide more information on DHS, U.S. Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations’ (HSI) involvement in Operation LeGend in Chicago, the effort to support state and local law enforcement investigations into violent crime. In a letter sent today, the Senators are seeking confirmation from Attorney General William Barr and Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf that DHS ICE HSI personnel assigned to support Operation LeGend will be under the operational control of DOJ and make sure all activities are directly related to violent crime reduction operations, and prevent DHS ICE HSI agents from engaging in harmful missions that divert law enforcement resources away from investigating violent criminal felony activity.
“While we appreciate DOJ components, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the U.S. Marshals Service, increasing the level of assistance provided to support the City of Chicago’s violent crime reduction initiatives, we are troubled by reports that DOJ law enforcement resources will be supplemented by DHS ICE HIS,” the Senators wrote. “We are concerned that the activities and behavior of HSI personnel may jeopardize the mission and undermine intergovernmental coordination.”
Last month, Duckworth and Durbin helped introduce the Preventing Authoritarian Policing Tactics on America’s Streets Act to block the Trump administration from deploying federal forces as a shadowy paramilitary against Americans after heavily armed, unmarked federal forces were filmed grabbing protesters off the street in Portland, Oregon.
A full copy of the letter is available below and online here.
Dear Attorney General Barr and Acting Secretary Wolf:
We write to express our concern regarding the assignment of law enforcement personnel from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) component as part of the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) expansion of the ongoing Operation LeGend effort to support State and local law enforcement investigations into violent crime.
While we appreciate DOJ components, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the U.S. Marshals Service, increasing the level of assistance provided to support the City of Chicago’s violent crime reduction initiatives, we are troubled by reports that DOJ law enforcement resources will be supplemented by DHS ICE HSI. We are concerned that the activities and behavior of HSI personnel may jeopardize the mission and undermine intergovernmental coordination.
Accordingly, we are seeking confirmation that HSI personnel assigned to support Operation LeGend will be under the operational control of DOJ and report directly to DOJ officials to make sure all activities directly relate to violent crime reduction operations and prevent DHS ICE HSI agents from engaging in harmful missions that divert law enforcement resources away from investigating violent criminal felony activity. Please provide the following information:
Since the majority of firearms used in violent crimes carried out in the City of Chicago are from out-of-State, there is a proper and needed role for Federal law enforcement to better stop the illicit purchasing and trafficking of firearms to criminal organizations. Furthermore, gun trace data indicates that FFL Dealers in and outside of Illinois are failing to protect their communities by executing irresponsible firearm sales. If the investigations under this operation determine that such reckless firearm sales are lawful, then we demand that DOJ provide Congress with specific legislative requests to strengthen firearm laws.
We are also concerned by the possibility that DHS will decide to send Federal Protective Service (FPS) agents, and other DHS personnel designated to support FPS and its mission, to the City of Chicago to protect Federal property. We ask that, in the event that DHS assigns such personnel to the City of Chicago, that it inform us immediately of the assignment and provide us a copy of the order assigning such personnel and any order cross-designating employees from other DHS components to FPS. So that we can better understand the circumstances of DHS’s assignment of such agents to Portland, Oregon, we also ask that you provide us with a copy of the assignment and cross-designation orders associated with DHS’s decision to send personnel to the City of Portland.
We look forward to your prompt response to this urgent matter.
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