Protesters gather as AG Sessions speaks on LI gang violence

United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions was met by protesters questioning his motive behind his Long Island visit on Friday. United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions was met by protesters questioning his motive behind his Long Island visit on Friday.
CENTRAL ISLIP -

United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions was met by protesters questioning his motive behind his Long Island visit on Friday.

Scores of demonstrators gathered outside the federal court building in Central Islip, concerned that Sessions is using the recent wave of gang killings on the Island to forward President Donald Trump's administration's tough stance on illegal immigration.

"I really think that he is going to use this gang issue to justify just rounding up random people that are here," said Michelle Terrell, of Bay Shore.

There was a small group of counter-demonstrators supporting the attorney general and his promise to crack down on gangs in the community.

Karen Nicholas, of Central Islip, says gangs are constantly threatening kids and that increased local policing has not yet made a difference.

Demonstrators on both side of this issue were kept far away from where Sessions was speaking, having been moved to the back of the federal court building. But they still said they believe their message will be heard.

One person who did the see the protesters was U.S. Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford). He said Sessions' visit was not about immigration, but about showing that the full weight of the federal government is working to eradicate MS-13.

"They should be on their knees thanking him, not out there protesting him," King said.

Suffolk police said the demonstration was peaceful and that no arrests were made.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."