Paterson Police Department – Immigration Policy

Immigration Policy

It is the policy of the Paterson Police Department to serve the immigrant community in compliance with New Jersey Attorney General Directive 2018-6.

Individuals are less likely to report a crime if they fear that the responding officer will turn them over to immigration authorities. This fear makes it more difficult for officers to solve crimes and bring suspects to justice.

Law enforcement officers protect the public by investigating state criminal offenses and enforcing state criminal laws.  They are not responsible for enforcing civil immigration violations except in narrowly defined circumstances.  Such responsibilities instead fall to the federal government and those operating under its authority.

Although officers should assist federal immigration authorities when required to do so by law, they should also be mindful that aiding above and beyond those requirements threatens to blur the distinctions between state and federal actors and between federal immigration law and state criminal law. It also risks undermining the trust between the law enforcement community and the public.  View Full Policy.