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DOJ Reports Excessive Force Used by Chicago PD
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Summary: The Justice Department concluded their year-long report to find that the Chicago Police Department frequently uses excessive force.

After a 13-month investigation by the Justice Department, they have concluded that the Chicago Police Department unconstitutionally uses excessive force. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the federal probe’s findings into the heavily scrutinized department over office-involved shootings. The Justice Department and city have agreed to work on a reform plan that will be overseen by a federal judge.

  
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The findings in the investigation started after the controversial shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014 involve numerous incidents of unjustified force. These include shooting at fleeing suspects where there is no immediate threat, shooting at vehicles without justification, using tasers when no apparent threat, and using force to retaliate against and punish people.

One of the biggest problems pointed out in the 161-page report was the city panel used to review use of force. The Justice Department found many incidents where force was not needed but the city panel had come to a conclusion that the force was justified.

Lynch said, “The resulting deficit in trust and accountability is not just bad for residents – it’s also bad for dedicated police officers trying to do their jobs safely and effectively.” She blamed a lot of the department’s issues on insufficient training and accountability procedures. The report states, “CPD has not provided officers with adequate guidance to understand how and when they may use force, or how to safely and effectively control and resolve encounters to reduce the need to use force.”

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Mayor Rahm Emanuel noted that the police department has already taken steps to address excessive force and accountability issues by putting body cameras on every officer, upgrading policies, and more.

President of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7 Dean C. Angelo Sr., said, “Completing an investigation into the 12,000 member Chicago Police Department, and in a city with more than 2 million citizens in less than one year, clearly brings to light that the outgoing DOJ wanted to issue a report before the new administration takes over on January 20, 2017. What also remains to be seen is whether or not the report might be considered compromised or incomplete as a result of rushing to get it out before the Presidential inauguration.”



Do you think the timing of the report in relation to the inauguration is a coincidence? Tell us in the comments below.

To learn more about the Chicago Police Department, read these articles:

Photo: commons.wikimedia.org



 

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