DEA chief condemns Trump's encouragement of police brutality

The DEA has faced accusations of police brutality of its own. In 2003, nationwide outrage ensued after a DEA agent shot a 14-year-old girl in Texas to death in a drug investigation and did not face any charges.
By Leon Clarke | Aug 04, 2017
President Trump gave police bad advice when he said it is acceptable to treat suspects roughly, in the opinion of the Drug Enforcement Administration's acting head, Chuck Rosenberg. Rosenberg sent an agency-wide email Saturday in which he reminded them to act "honorably" at all times, even when dealing with criminal suspects.

"I write to offer a strong reaffirmation of the operating principles to which we, as law enforcement professionals, adhere," he wrote. "We must earn and keep the public trust and continue to hold ourselves to the very highest standards."

Rosenberg did not refer to Trump by name. But Benjamin Wittes, writing for the blog Lawfare, interpreted the DEA chief's words as a direct rebuke of Trump's admonition to police on July 29th, in which the president tacitly endorsed rough treatment of arrested suspects: "When you see these guys being thrown into the back of the paddy wagon, just being thrown in--Please don't be too nice," Trump had said.
"Rosenberg's message is what it looks like when a law enforcement agency head is willing to speak seriously in response to Trump's abusive treatment of law enforcement and abusive vision of it," Wittes wrote, adding that it is a surprise that neither Attorney General Jeff Sessions nor Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein "has had the guts" to say something similar.
The DEA has faced accusations of police brutality of its own. In 2003, nationwide outrage ensued after a DEA agent shot a 14-year-old girl in Texas to death in a drug investigation and did not face any charges. And in 2012, DEA agents arrested a college student on suspicions of drug dealing and left him handcuffed and unattended in a cell for five days, during which he received no food or water and had to drink his own urine to survive.

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