More than 60 law enforcement agencies across the country are teaming up with the federal government to have the power to arrest illegal immigrants, a move that could add hundreds of new officers to the effort, reports USA Today. At least 14 police and sheriff’s departments have already received training from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Many of the 50 new departments looking into training are from smaller cities and suburbs that have seen a wave of illegal immigrants looking for work.
Some major cities have spurned the federal government’s offer, saying their officers don’t have time to look for illegal immigrants and worry about the effect, according to the Major Cities Chiefs Association. Some communities want only the authority to check the status of prisoners who can then be handed over for possible deportation. Others want their police to check the status of people suspected of crimes or even traffic violations.