Albany, N.Y.’s top prosecutor charges that law enforcers support tough-on-drug policies they know do not work well because the practices give them “lucrative jobs,” District Attorney David Soares made the comment Tuesday to the 17th International Conference on the Reduction of Drug-Related Harm in Vancouver, Canada. Soares’ remarks aggravated an already strained relationship with law enforcement officials in Albany County.
Albany Police Chief James Tuffey called the Soares’ comments “disingenuous to the officers who go out every day who are not highly paid, contrary to what he said.” Albany County Sheriff James Campbell said, “For 41 years I’ve been doing this, and it’s a slap. I am as angry as I am disappointed.” American lawmakers “lack the willpower to reform drug laws despite their ineffectiveness at curbing drug use and crime because ‘reform is scary,’ ” Soares told the Canadians. He also claimed the U.S. penchant for building prisons was an accepted “economic development strategy.”