After the Brussels terrorist attacks that left 35 dead and more than 300 wounded in Belgium, U.S. presidential candidates offered diverse responses to the bombings. Some focused on securing the borders, while others proposed more detailed strategies. Sen. Ted Cruz’s comments, which called for more patrolling of Muslim neighborhoods in America, came under heavy media scrutiny and sparked debate.
During an interview on the FOX Business Network’s Varney & Co., Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke discussed his support for patrolling Muslim neighborhoods, and suggested that U.S. law enforcement has already been successfully invoking this type of policing.
“In New York, they’re doing it under the Handschu agreement which allows the NYPD and their demographics units to go anywhere in these Muslim communities that the public is allowed to go,” Sheriff Clarke told Stuart Varney. “They do not do rolling surveillance, they do not do rogue spying.”
The Handschu agreement is a court ordered set of guidelines that govern how the New York City Police Department (NYPD) can monitor political groups.
Sheriff Clarke said the police are looking for evidence of radicalization in hot-spot areas and such practices could have uncovered the San Bernardino plot in California.
“The neighbors knew something was up. They knew something didn’t smell right, but they were afraid to say anything,” Clarke said. “We have to get over the notion that these [Muslim communities] are no-go zones.”
Sheriff Clarke, who recently won the Law Enforcement Executive Officer of the Year Award, discussed the importance of law enforcement to protect Muslim communities and emphasized how police officers, including Muslim cops, have a duty to understand the customs and traditions in those neighborhoods.