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Trump Dusts Off Tale Of Mystery Cop Who Claimed He Could Fix Chicago Crime 'Immediately'

By Stephen Gossett in News on Oct 12, 2017 2:58PM

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President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017, in the East Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

While taking a jab at Chicago's "bad management" of crime, President Donald Trump invoked a familiar yarn on Wednesday night, bringing up the oft-referenced but still-unidentified cop who, according to his (sometimes shifting) tale, told the then-presidential candidate violence in the city could be stopped within one week.

Trump sat down with Sean Hannity of Fox for an interview and returned to the old hobbyhorse, which local law enforcement official last year said had been discredited.

Trump told Hannity, referencing the tale he first unveiled in August of last year:

“I’ll never forget I was in Chicago and a police officer there, it was a motorcycle deal to the plane and I was talking to police, I was taking a picture. I said, ‘How do you stop this?’ ‘We could stop it immediately sir,’” Trump said. “I said, ‘What do you mean?’ ‘If they’d let us do our job, we could stop it immediately.'"

Here's a clip of a portion of the exchange:

Trump also took aim at the city's government. He also said, via WGN:

“Chicago is out of control. I don’t know what they’re doing in Chicago to have this many shootings, this many killings and all of the different things that are going on. This is not like it’s the United States of America. And pure and simple, that’s bad management. That’s bad politics. It’s incredible. And then you talk to them, ‘why aren’t you doing something?’, and they don’t even want to talk to you about it. It’s really insulting to our nation."

As recently as late July, Trump had reiterated the tale about the unnamed officer, whom he then called "a rough cookie." As he did in July, mayoral spokeman Adam Collins threw cold water on Trump's account and reminded the president that much of Chicago's problems with illegal firearms stems from lax laws in neighboring states.

Collins said on Thursday in a statement, via NBC:

“If the President has a name for this mystery person he continues to talk about, we're all ears. In the meantime, we live in the real world and if the president wants to build on the reductions in violence our hard working officers are achieving, if he wants to have an immediate effect on gun violence, he could do something to stop guns from flowing into our city from Indiana and Wisconsin."