Can Policing Really Change? Ten Lessons From the DOJ’s ‘Pattern or Practice’ Bias Probes

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Photo by Willy Ochaya via Flickr

The first consent decree ordered under the  Justice Department “pattern or practice” program to investigate local police departments for violations of constitutional rights was signed 20 years ago.  There've been 30 settlements with departments since that first Pittsburgh agreement in 1997.

It’s therefore an appropriate time to assess the program’s  impact. What has it achieved? Has it effectively reduced police misconduct?

Has it been cost-effective?

Here are 10 quick lessons I’ve drawn from my own . . .

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