Mayor Kenney: I will stand up against hate crimes

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney condemned the hateful rhetoric, defacing of property and flash mob attacks taking place in the wake of the presidential election.

He vowed to take decisive action for these acts, acts he says have no place in Philadelphia.

"Those who choose to commit these acts should know you will be caught and charged to the fullest," Kenney said.

Kenney spoke Monday night at a closing reception at the University of Pennsylvania for those who took part in the Philadelphia International Unity Cup.

He was reacting to a number of acts that took place in recent days including a flash mob attack Saturday night in Center City that left six people hurt including an off-duty officer and his wife. Two teens were arrested, four others are being sought:

"Bad as it is, and disrespectful and dangerous as it is, we're getting to the bottom, there's been some arrests made and we'll continue to pursue the people who engage in that activity," Kenney said.

The mayor also addressed hateful rhetoric and the defacing of property in the days after the election. Police say a man seen in surveillance video is suspected of spray painting swastikas and bigoted comments in South Philadelphia.

"As mayor, I pledge to you that I will stand up against hate crimes, violence and anything else that threatens our city's inclusive and diverse practices," Kenney said.

The mayor was also asked what will happen if President-elect Donald Trump does crack down on cities like Philadelphia that will not enforce immigration laws.

"I vow to uphold the Constitution of the United States by not holding people in jail without a warrant, which I think is in violation of the U.S. Constitution," Kenney said.

And there are some people who are very nervous right now over what Trump will do.

Mayor Kenney says he will not speculate, but says he is encouraged that President-elect Trump seems to be walking back some of the things he said about immigration on the campaign trail.
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