Police union blasts Stanton's remarks on immigration, sanctuary cities

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PLEA logo. (Source: azplea.com) PLEA logo. (Source: azplea.com)

The union representing Phoenix police officers sharply criticized Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton for his comments regarding immigration policy and sanctuary cities.

Ken Crane, the president of the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association, sent a letter on Tuesday to Stanton's to express the group's "strong disagreement and disappointment" for what he said last week.

Stanton said Donald Trump's executive actions on immigration threaten to damage his city and Arizona will fight the federal government's attempt "to turn the Phoenix Police Department into a mass deportation force." He also said the executive orders will "incite fear and chaos for Latinos and immigrants alike."

[READ MORE: Phoenix mayor criticizes President Trump's executive orders]

PLEA said the mass deportation force remark was "baseless and inflammatory." Officers said it has a well-written policy concerning enforcement of immigration laws and the executive orders "are federal law that cannot be disregarded simply because they do not comport with someone's political agenda."

In the letter, Crane said Stanton should reconsider the statements but also said, "I know that making such a request would simply fall on deaf ears."

"My guess is it would be too much to ask you to side with the men and women in law enforcement and the citizens of Phoenix over people who choose to enter the country illegally," Crane said in the letter.

A week ago, Trump signed executive actions to jump start construction of the border wall and add 5,000 more border agents.

[RELATED: Phoenix to vote on sanctuary city status]

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