PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The top law enforcement officers in the region are warning of consequences for the violent protesters and looters. After 48 hours of unrest, riots and mobs of looters on city streets, federal prosecutors now promise those inflicting damage will face federal consequences.
“Federal law enforcement actions will be addressed and apprehending and charging the violent agitators who have hijacked peaceful protest and engaged in violation of federal law,” U.S. Attorney William McSwain said.
McSwain appeared at a news conference with Sen. Pat Toomey, Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby and other Republican lawmakers.
McSwain said the FBI and ATF will coordinate with city law enforcement to tamp down violent outbursts.
On Sunday, the city acknowledged officers were overpowered and outnumbered.
“I also issue this warning, if you engage in violence and destruction and we have federal jurisdiction over your crime, you will be prosecuted in federal court,” McSwain said.
In a phone call earlier Monday with governors, President Donald Trump criticized them for a so-called lack of aggression in bringing more law and order to cities like Philadelphia, with the commander in chief saying what happened in the city was “horrible.”
Toomey added his own concern with the president’s divisive tweets.
“I do think some of his tweets have not been helpful and it would be helpful if he would change the tone of his message,” Toomey said.
Over 400 people have been arrested in Philadelphia since Saturday and 18 police officers have been injured.
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