U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Friday that the Justice Department will conduct a full-scale civil rights investigation into use of force by Baltimore police officers, reports the Baltimore Sun. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Maryland Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, among others, had urged Lynch to launch the investigation.
Lynch visited Baltimore this week and met the family of Freddie Gray, the man who died last month of a severed spine and other injuries sustained while in police custody. His death sparked destructive riots in the city. The Justice Department’s civil rights division has launched investigations into 20 police departments in the past six years. The probes look at excessive force, discriminatory harassment, false arrests, and unlawful stops, searches or arrests.