Justin Herdman, U.S. Attorney for the northern district of Ohio, on how the initiative helps combat crime in U.S. cities.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Instantly clear, everyday congestion: Emily welcome back as major cities, see a surge in violence, the Justice Department, sending federal law enforcement to assist local police in nine cities. Since its launch in July operation, Legend has led to more than two thousand arrests with over four hundred and seventy charged with federal crimes. U dot S attorney for the northern District of Ohio, Justin Herbertman is one of the several: U Dot S attorneys leading the charge on the operation he joins me now with an update from Cleveland Good morning. Justin. Thank you for joining us today. Give us that update please good morning Emily. Thank you for having me well. We are underway full little underway across the country with operation legend. As you said, we have had over two thousand arrests already since we launched in July. That includes almost one hundred and fifty people who have been wanted for murder. So we are not just arresting people for low level warrants. Here we are talking about very violent fugitives, very violent criminals and were
getting them off the streets of these nine cities across the country. Emily there is a narrative being floated by some that the this is a federal overreach, its encroachment and leading to more divisiveness on the ground. Can you speak to that and speak to potentially the reception you are receiving in these nine cities by the residents there who are receiving this federal help yeah? Well, we are in these cities because we have the support of the community. We have the support of the local leadership and we have the support of the local police departments and what you are seeing across the country are the results that speak to that support and were able to take two thousand violent fugitives and violent criminals off the streets, because we have the support of the community and then we can demonstrate to them that we have had results here. We have taken over five hundred guns off the street. We have charged almost five hundred people federally under operation legend. We even have taken seven kilos
of fentanyl off the street thats enough fentanyl to kill the entire population of Detroit and Chicago combined Emily, illustrating some of that success. Operation. Legend has made multiple arrests. Here are a few of the numbers here are so defendants charged with federal crimes? Eighty nine Kansas City, Missouri, ninety nine Chicago Illinois. We have one hundred and three: can you tell us what are some of the challenges you are facing, or some more resources that you would like to see? Moving forward, yeah in these city, thats tremendous effort, the numbers you read off there, two weeks, four weeks in St Louis, that they have been able to charge that many people federally. What we look for in terms of resources is exactly what the president and the attorney general have provided in these nine cities, which is supplementing existing federal tax foxes with federal agents, providing a place for police officers to work with our federal agents, to identify the most violent criminals on our streets, to take them off the streets and to ensure that the
community has some breathing space here to get through the remainder of the summer and fall without the violent crime that we have seen surging across the country over the past several months.
Transcript generated on 2020-09-08.