Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson will meet Thursday morning with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to discuss how the federal government might assist Chicago in the fight against its relentless gun violence, according to a department spokesperson.
Johnson will meet with Sessions at the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C. along with several other police officials from across the country, CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said.
Johnson will ask for federal funding to help mentor programs for young people in Chicago, Guglielmi confirmed.
Last month, Emanuel traveled to Washington to meet with members of President Donald Trump’s administration, including Sessions. The trip came on the heels of Emanuel’s very public back and forth with Trump, who warned local authorities in January that he would “send in the Feds” if they can’t get a handle on the ongoing “carnage” in Chicago.
A readout from the Department of Justice said Emanuel and Sessions discussed “what might be done to combat the shootings and murders in that city and bring back proactive community policing.”
Last week, Sessions outlined his new plan to target violent criminals in a memo to federal prosecutors across the country, noting that they should work closely with federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners to suss out violent offenders in each district.
“Turning back our nation’s recent rise in violent crime is a top priority for the Department of Justice, and it requires decisive action from our federal prosecutors,” Sessions said in a statement. “I’m urging each of them to continue working closely with their counterparts at all levels, and to use every tool we have to put violent offenders behind bars and keep our citizens safe.”
Sessions’ new initiative builds on the creation of the U.S. Department of Justice Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety, which was announced last week. According to the DOJ, the task force is “central to the Attorney General’s commitment to combatting illegal immigration and violent crime, such as drug trafficking, gang violence and gun crimes, and to restoring public safety to all of the nation’s communities."
The Justice Department issued a scathing report in January that found that the Chicago Police Department violated constitutional rights by engaging in a “pattern or practice of use of excessive force.”
The highly anticipated report, released just one week before President Barack Obama left office, revealed landmark findings about the Chicago Police Department, aimed at eliciting change as the city battles a cloud of distrust as well as spiking violence. The city has entered into an agreement in principle with the DOJ to begin negotiations for a formal consent decree to implement the report’s findings.
However, Sessions announced last week that he would “pull back” on federal probes into local police departments and has failed to commit to Chicago’s consent decree, according to the Tribune.