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Trump orders crime study, hails police across U.S. for 'incredible job'

"I've done more than any other president has done for the police," the president said after making his first trip to Chicago since taking office.

By Nicholas Sakelaris
President Donald Trump departs Monday from the North Portico of the White House for a day trip to Chicago. Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/a1b38c3ef8edfb14306dacc0b4af4973/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
President Donald Trump departs Monday from the North Portico of the White House for a day trip to Chicago. Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 28 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump visited a law enforcement conference in Chicago Monday to sign an executive order aimed at finding root causes of crime.

Trump traveled from the White House to Chicago to speak at a gathering of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. In his remarks, he was critical of city leaders and cited the gun violence that has plagued Chicago for years.

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Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, who was supposed to speak at Monday's event, did not attend. He said his absence was a personal boycott.

"More than anyone else, this person should be here because maybe he could learn something," Trump said.

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Trump blasted Johnson for allowing Chicago to become an immigration "sanctuary city" and said his police force has not cooperated with federal agents in hundreds of cases.

"In each case, the detainer was denied and Eddie Johnson wants to talk about values," Trump said. "No. People like Johnson put criminals and illegal aliens before the citizens of Chicago. Those are his values and frankly those values are a disgrace."

"I have taken into account, not just my personal feelings about it, but our core values as a city," Johnson said of his boycott. "We are nothing without trust and with some of our communities under siege, it just doesn't line up with our city's core values along with my personal values."

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Trump also told the 126th conference Americans love and respect police for the job they do.

"You don't hear it enough. You do it an incredible job. The people of this country love you," he said. "I've done more than any other president has done for the police."

Trump signed the order after his remarks, which creates a commission to find root causes of crime and make recommendations for change. The panel will examine the influence of mental illness and homelessness.

"We will begin implementing its best ideas immediately," Trump added.

Thousands of activists demonstrated across the city Monday for the president's visit, which was Trump's first as president.

Later Monday, Trump is scheduled to participate in a roundtable discussion and fundraiser for his re-election effort before returning to Washington, D.C.

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