DOJ Report on Las Vegas Police Called National Model on Use of Force

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The U.S. Justice Department’s approach in reforming the Las Vegas police is being praised as a national model for better law enforcement by one of the nation’s top police accountability experts, says the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Prof. Samuel Walker of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, author of several books on police accountability, said police departments everywhere should compare their own policies to recommendations federal authorities made Thursday in a report to the Metropolitan Police Department.

“This would be a good measuring rod for your use of force policies,” he said of other departments. “People ought to look at this report and learn from it.” The Justice Department report, which capped an eight-month investigation that included nearly 100 inter­views, has the potential to make the department a national leader in use of force policies and training. The study could be the first wave in a new, less confrontational relationship between the Justice Department and local police. “It’s a model program for how the Justice Department can help local agencies improve their standards,” Walker said. “Everybody thinks of the Justice Department as the agency that sues police departments.”

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