PERF Audit Suggests Changes for Miami Beach Police


Miami Beach's frequently scrutinized police department should “strongly consider” equipping officers with cop-cameras, discouraging them from firing at dangerous drivers, and rethinking officers' off-duty details, according to an audit of the department. The Miami Herald reports that the review of the department was commissioned last year after a series of headline-grabbing controversies, in particular the fatal Tasering of teen graffiti artist Israel “Reefa” Hernandez-Llach. Auditors with the Police Executive Research Forum were asked to review the department's policies and determine if any changes were needed.

Overall, they found that the department has undergone “significant improvement over the last several years, partly in order to respond to episodes of high profile officer misconduct.” But they made a series of recommendations: officers should not use a Taser repeatedly on a suspect; make it a “high priority” to ban officers from shooting at suspects who are driving their car dangerously at police but aren't threatening officers with any other weapon, and develop clearer policies for random and suspicion-based tests to see if officers have alcohol in their system while on duty.

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