Legal Question in Constitutional Law in Missouri

Are small towns under any statutes to provide some type of law enforcement?

The sheriff generally takes attitude that if something doesn't violate state law, they can't do anything.

And the mayor and city council whenever something comes up? They tell you to call the sheriff. Catch-22.

Asked on 7/03/10, 3:02 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Edward Hoffman Law Offices of Edward A. Hoffman

Enforcing state law -- which is the proper role of sheriffs and local police alike -- qualifies as "some type of law enforcement". What more are you looking for?

Local authorities generally don't enforce federal laws. In part this is so they can devote their resources to enforcing state laws. It's also partly because they have not been trained in the nuances of federal laws as they have for state laws.

If you think a federal law is being violated and you want it enforced, you should contact the local office of the appropriate federal law enforcement agency. These include the FBI, ICE, BATF, etc.

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Answered on 7/03/10, 6:16 pm

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