DEA chief: Trump 'condoned police misconduct'
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The acting head of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has told his agency's employees to disregard President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump reversed course on flavored e-cigarette ban over fear of job losses: report Trump to award National Medal of Arts to actor Jon Voight Sondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report MORE's suggestion that police treat suspects roughly, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

In a memo sent to agency personnel on Saturday, Chuck Rosenberg said that, while he did not believe any "special agent or task force officer of the DEA would mistreat a defendant," he felt compelled to address the president's statement, saying Trump "condoned police misconduct."

“I write to offer a strong reaffirmation of the operating principles to which we, as law enforcement professionals, adhere,” the memo says, according to The Wall Street Journal.

“I write because we have an obligation to speak out when something is wrong. That’s what law enforcement officers do. That’s what you do. We fix stuff. At least, we try.”


During a speech in Long Island, N.Y., on Friday, Trump touted his administration's efforts to crack down on the MS-13 gang and appeared to encourage law enforcement officers not to "be too nice" to the suspects they arrest.

“When you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon — you just see them thrown in, rough — I said, please don’t be too nice,” Trump said.

“Like when you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head, you know, the way you put their hand over?" he continued. "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?”

That statement drew widespread criticism from police departments and associations, who called Trump's statement an endorsement of excessive force.