RI Police Superintendent Quits After Dispute Over “Secure Communities”


Past and present police officers in the Rhode Island state legislature lamented State Police Superintendent Brendan Doherty’s resignation as a “huge loss to the state of Rhode Island,” reports the Providence Journal. On Doherty’s high-profile stance on the need to enforce federal laws aimed at detecting whether suspected criminals are in the country legally, Pawtucket detective and Rep. Raymond H. Johnston Jr. said he sided with Doherty.

Before he was quieted last month, Doherty took issue with the stance Steven Pare had taken in his new role as public safety commissioner in Providence. Pare asked the federal government’s permission to opt out of the so-called Secure Communities program. Doherty said, “There are foreign nationals who illegally enter the United States on a daily basis, some of whom may be here for criminal or terrorist reasons. It defies logic that law enforcement agencies should opt not to use modern technology designed to identify and remove this potentially dangerous criminal element because doing so may create an environment of ‘fear or mistrust’ in the immigrant community.”

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