Donald Trump will attend the wake of a slain NYPD officer as he goes after Joe Biden over crime

Donald Trump will attend Thursday’s wake of a New York City police officer gunned down in the line of duty, as presumptive Republican presidential nominee has made crime a focus of his third White House campaign and accused President Joe Biden of lacking toughness.

The visitation for Officer Jonathan Diller, who was fatally shot during a traffic stop on Monday, will be held in suburban Massapequa. Police said 31-year-old Diller was shot below his bulletproof vest while approaching an illegally parked car in Queens.

Diller, who was married and had a 1-year-old son, was rushed to a hospital where he died.

Trump’s visit comes as Biden will also be in New York for a previously scheduled fundraiser with Democratic ex-presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. Shortly after the former President’s campaign announced he would attend the wake, a Republican Party account on social media posted headlines contrasting Trump’s planned visit with Biden’s fundraiser.

Trump has deplored crime in heavily Democratic cities, called for shoplifters to be shot immediately and wants to immunize police officers from lawsuits for potential misconduct. But he’s also demonized local prosecutors, the FBI and the Department of Justice over the criminal prosecutions he faces and the investigation while he was President into his first campaign’s interactions with Russia.

He has also embraced those imprisoned for their roles on the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, when a mob of his angry supporters overran police lines and Capitol and local police officers were attacked and beaten.

Trump’s campaign did not offer more details about his appearance or whether he planned to speak.

“President Trump is moved by the invitation to join NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller’s family and colleagues as they deal with his senseless and tragic death,” Trump campaign spokesperson Karoline Leavitt said in a statement.

The former President and his supporters sought a similar split screen with Biden earlier this month as they went after the President over crime and illegal immigration while both were campaigning in Georgia. Trump during his visit to the state met with the family of slain nursing student Laken Riley. An immigrant from Venezuela who entered the U.S. illegally is charged with her death.

Trump posted about Diller’s death on his social media network Tuesday, offering prayers to Diller’s family and appreciation for law enforcement. He also called the shooter a “thug” and noted that police said Diller’s alleged shooter, Guy Rivera, had numerous prior arrests, declaring that he “NEVER should have been let back out on the streets.”

Diller was the first New York City police officer killed in the line of duty in two years.

The last incident involved the fatal shooting of two New York City police officers and the day after the second funeral, Biden visited the department’s headquarters and spoke to officers and top brass.

Biden has pledged that the federal government will work more closely with police to combat gun violence and crack down on illegal guns.


Republished with permission from The Associated Press.

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