On Thursday, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo spoke out about how Donald Trump’s plan to deploy Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to raid homes of undocumented immigrants will create “havoc in our community.”
Houston’s police chief sounded off on reports of the Trump administration’s planned immigration raids this weekend, saying “all that does is create havoc.”
“There’s great fear amongst our immigrant community as to what’s going to happen,” Acevedo said.
Acevedo spoke openly with CNN and shared that U.S.-born children of immigrants had approached him at forums saying, “I’m afraid to go to school, I’m afraid to leave the house, I’m afraid to come home and find my parents are gone. “Those fears are real.”
“And you try to allay those fears, but those fears are real,” he continued, adding that “when we make pronouncements that we’re going to go round up a million people, all that does is create havoc” and push people “further into the dark and further outside of the realm of society, which means we have a harder time investigating crime.”
Trump has slated ICE raids to begin on Sunday. Trump’s original plan was to launch the raids last month, but he postponed to buy some time to try and figure out a “solution to the Asylum and Loophole problems at the Southern Border” with Democrats, he tweeted.
Trump has directed ICE agents to target thousands of immigrants without legal status and who have received deportation orders. It is expected that the operation will target at least 2,000 families this weekend.
“I think we should be chasing crooks, not cooks,” he added.
Acevedo did acknowledge that his department does work with ICE “as it relates to Homeland Security Investigations, going after real hardcore criminals.”
“There’s a lot of them out there and we’re just hopeful that we don’t create greater problems for society by separating families,” Acevedo added. “Families belong together, they certainly don’t belong apart.”
Acevedo isn’t the only official in Texas who is opposed to the ICE raids. Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez has also spoken out about the planned raids.
Gonzalez said in a statement that these planned raids were a waste of valuable resources on people who “do not represent a threat.”
“The focus should always be on clear and immediate safety threats. Not others who are not threats,” Gonzalez said. “Diverting valuable law enforcement resources away from public safety threats would drive undocumented families further into the shadows and damage our community safety. It silences witnesses and victims, and [would] further worsen the challenges law enforcement officials face.”
Gonzalez has made it clear that the Harris County Sheriff’s Office would not be taking part in these raids.