In a “60 Minutes” interview that aired on Sunday, FBI Director Christopher Wray spoke about the shocking rise in the murders of police officers. He also indicated that the increase in crime against law enforcement officers is surpassing the general levels of violent crime in the country.
Wray’s comments come at a time when crime rates have been soaring in Democrat-governed cities, amid calls to “defund the police,” which have quietly grown less insistent as Democratic politicians realize it’s not exactly a winning slogan for the upcoming midterm elections.
In the interview with CBS News’ Scott Pelley, Wray said that murders of law enforcement officers rose by 59% in 2021. The overall murder rate in the country increased by 29%, and 73 police officers were killed in 2021, according to Fox News Digital.
“Violence against law enforcement in this country is one of the biggest phenomena that I think doesn’t get enough attention,” Wray observed. “Last year, officers were being killed at a rate of almost one every five days.”
When asked why police officers were being targeted, Wray linked it to the broader increase in violence and lawlessness that has embroiled the country during Joe Biden’s reign.
“Some of it is tied to the violent crime problem as a whole. But one of the phenomena that we saw in the last year is that an alarming percentage of the 73 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty last year were killed through things like being ambushed or shot while out on patrol,” he said.
“They were killed because they were police officers?” Pelley asked, astonished.
“Right,” Wray replied. “Wearing the badge shouldn’t make you a target.”
When asked why the country’s murder rate has soared in recent years, Wray did what many government officials and bureaucrats do—he blamed the pandemic. He then condemned juveniles and guns, before admitting that releasing repeat offenders back onto the streets probably has something to do with it.
“Certainly the pandemic didn’t help,” he explained. “There’s a variety of ways in which that contributed to it. We’re seeing more and more juveniles committing violent crime, and that’s certainly an issue. We’re seeing a certain amount of gun trafficking, interstate gun trafficking. That’s part of it. And we’re seeing an alarming frequency of some of the worst of the worst getting back out on the streets.”
FBI Director Christopher Wray says a combination of factors, including the pandemic and gun trafficking, have contributed to a rise in violent crime in the U.S.
— CBS Mornings (@CBSMornings) April 25, 2022
Pelley pressed the FBI director about outcomes.
“Can you say you’re making any headway in violent crime?” he asked.
“We are working very hard with our partners,” Wray responded, “state and local law enforcement partners, through task forces, task forces all over the country. And through surging rapid deployment teams to try to combat violent crime in specific hot spots. Last year I think we arrested something like 15,000 violent gang members around the country. And part of what fuels us to pursue this mission is our deep conviction that law enforcement’s most sacred duty is to ensure that people can live free from fear in their own homes and neighborhoods.”
Pelley concluded the interview by asking Wray to outline the “best guarantee” he can make to the American people.
“I can’t guarantee outcomes. What I can do is promise that I will try everything I can to make sure that we do the work in the right way—that our process has integrity, has rigor, has objectivity—that we bring those qualities to the work—and that we will follow the facts wherever they lead, to whomever they lead, no matter who likes it.”
Unfortunately, the “integrity” of the FBI has not exactly been unimpeachable of late, and as for following the facts wherever they lead, “no matter who likes it”—well, let’s just say the FBI’s handling of the Hillary Clinton emails and the Hunter Biden laptop scandal leave a lot to be desired.
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