The Colorado Association of Chief's of Police, which represents 150 law enforcement agencies, is opposing legislative proposals requiring local police to enforce immigration laws.
Association President John Patterson of Cherry Hills said police are very concerned about the pending immigration legislation. He said local police don't have the resources to do a job that even federal law enforcement cannot handle.
A bill proposed by Republican Senator Tom Wiens of Castle Rock would require local law enforcement to report any illegal immigrant to federal authorities.
Patterson said several obstacles stand in the way of enforcing the law, including the lack of a reliable national database on immigration status.
He said if police begin enforcing immigration laws it would make the already difficult task of gaining the cooperation of immigrants in general law enforcement impossible. Patterson said county jails would quickly be overwhelmed.