(The Center Square) – Milwaukee U.S. Attorney Matthew Krueger said Wednesday that 25 federal agents will be coming to Milwaukee as part of Operation Legend, and they will be focusing exclusively on violent crimes.
"These investigators will join the work already underway by existing joint federal, state and local task forces focused on combating violent crime, including offenses involving firearms and violent drug trafficking organizations," Krueger said. "Ten of those federal investigators are assigned to work in Milwaukee temporarily to provide immediate assistance, and the others will be assigned over the coming year."
Krueger made it clear that these federal agents will not do anything related to Milwaukee's Democratic National Convention, other protests in the city, or any Portland-style enforcement.
"You will not see federal agents amassing on Milwaukee's streets," Krueger added.
Milwaukee leaders, both in the city and the county, have made it clear for weeks that they do not want federal help.
Both the Milwaukee Common Council and One Milwaukee Task Force on Tuesday restated their opposition to what they call President Donald Trump's "escalation of violence" in Milwaukee.
Krueger on Wednesday said violence in Milwaukee has been escalating since the beginning of the year.
"In Milwaukee, there already have been 97 homicides in 2020, an 85 percent increase over last year. Non-fatal shootings in the city also are up 64 percent," he said.
Operation Legend is named after 4-year-old LeGend Taliferro, who was shot and killed while he slept early the morning of June 29 in Kansas City. As part of Operation Legend's first act, the FBI on Wednesday offered a $25,000 reward for information that leads to a conviction in the murder of Qunyonce Louis-Moore. She is a 15-year-old who was gunned down in Milwaukee on June 30 as she was walking home with friends.
The announcement of federal help also comes after a violent two days in Milwaukee. Milwaukee Police say 15 people were shot on Monday and Tuesday alone. One of those people died.