Tuesday, October 09, 2007

When Local Police Help Deport People, Public Safety Suffers

There is another newspaper article that explains how public safety suffers when local police are involved with deporting people. In the Savannah Morning News from Savannah, Georgia, Megan Matteucchi wrote about "Deportation fears hinder police investigations" on October 8, 2007. Garden City Police Chief David Lyons explained that in investigating a homicide, the police are finding few witnesses willing to talk with them. "It's that fear of deportation. It's a major problem for us."

He explained that the fear of being turned in for deportation as a crime witness complicates police efforts to gain trust within the Latino community. Georgia recently enacted the Security and Immigration Compliance Act, which requires turning over anyone jailed for a felony or DUI, but does not require police to check the status of witnesses or crime victims. This sounds vaguely similar to the New Jersey Attorney General's recent directive that requires local police to report the immigration status of people who are arrested (not even jailed!) for an indictible crime or DWI, but forbids checking the status of crime witnesses or crime victims.

In Georgia, local police are finding out that type of policy makes it extremely hard to gain the community's trust and they suspect it is hurting their ability to fight crime and investigate crimes. It isn't a stretch to believe that the policy is hurting public safety, by making it harder to solve crimes and letting criminals go unpunished. If the policy is hurting public safety in Georgia, there is reason to be very concerned that the similar policy in New Jersey may also hurt public safety in New Jersey.


At 1:38 PM, Blogger One Great American said...

If the dang Illegal aliens weren't here in the first place.....we wouldn't have most of our problems....we gotta start somewhere...so ICE...keep on rollin'


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