Constitutional Law

DOJ report says Cleveland police have pattern of using unreasonable force

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In a report (PDF) released Thursday, the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice said police in Cleveland have a pattern of using unreasonable force, sometimes endorsed by their supervisors.

In response to the report, the city and the DOJ will “develop a court-enforceable consent decree that will include a requirement for an independent monitor who will oversee and ensure necessary reforms,” CNN reports.

The Associated Press, the New York Times (reg. req.), the Northeast Ohio Media Group, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.l) and WKYC also have stories.

“Accountability and legitimacy are essential for communities to trust their police departments, and for there to be genuine collaboration between police and the citizens they serve,” said Attorney General Eric Holder in a written statement announcing the collaboration agreement between the DOJ and city officials.

In addition to protecting the rights of citizens, having a police force that treats individuals fairly and is respected by citizens helps protect officers, too, he said.

The report concludes an investigation by the DOJ that began in March 2013.

Related coverage:

Northeast Ohio Media Group: “Here’s a recap of the Plain Dealer investigation cited in the Justice Department’s use-of-force report”

Northeast Ohio Media Group: “Cleveland officer who shot Tamir Rice had ‘dismal’ handgun performance for Independence police”

Updated at 5:35 p.m. to include link to Wall Street Journal coverage.

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