Baltimore mayor seeks Justice Department probe of police practices in her city
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Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake is asking the U.S. Justice Department to investigate whether police practices in her city are violating civil rights.
In a news conference on Wednesday, Rawlings-Blake said the police department has improved, resulting in fewer complaints of police brutality, but more work needs to be done, the Baltimore Sun reports. She also said that Baltimore police would have body cameras by 2016.
Rawlings-Blake said she spoke with Attorney General Loretta Lynch on Tuesday, and she “understands the urgency of this request,” the New York Times reports. Rawlings-Blake said she wants the Justice Department to investigate whether Baltimore police have engaged in a pattern of stops, searches or arrests that violate the Fourth Amendment.
The Justice Department has already begun a probe into Baltimore officers’ treatment of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old man who died after his spine was injured while in police custody. The local state’s attorney has charged six officers in Gray’s death. The most serious charge—second-degree murder–is against the officer who drove the van in which Gray was transported.