Bring it on! That’s what Chicago police Superitendent Jody Weis is telling lawyers who sue his officers, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. Weis asked the city to become more aggressive in fighting lawsuits he views as “meritless” by going to trial instead of settling them. He told Chief U.S. District Judge James Holderman of the change in strategy, saying, “I have asked the Department of Law to litigate those cases which would have been settled [as] a matter of financial concern.”
Attorney Jeffrey Granich, who represents clients who claim they have been victims of police abuse, said, “They are making decisions that are going to cost the city millions of dollars.” Granich said Weis isn’t addressing the underlying problem of officer abuse. The city’s Law Department is moving forward with the new strategy. “We have seen an increase in the number of small-value lawsuits being filed” against the police, said Law Department spokeswoman Jennifer Hoyle, who defined such cases as those that seek less than $100,000. In the past, city attorneys might settle such a lawsuit for $2,000 if they thought it might cost $10,000 to defend against it, Hoyle said.