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Diane Publishing Books
Federal Intervention in Local Policing: Pittsburghńˇ╗s Experience with a Consent Decree
Robert C. Davis (au)
In 1994, Congress gave the Civil Rights Div. of the Dept. of Justice (DOJ) the authority to file civil law suits against states and municipalities in the face of a ńˇýpattern or practiceńˇŁ of illegal or unconstitutional police actions. Since then, DOJ has investigated police practices in jurisdictions from N.Y. to Calif. In some cases, DOJ filed lawsuits, but these cases were settled by consent decrees or a memorandum of agreement or understanding. These generally outline a specific series of reforms that the police department must implement, and most provide for a federal monitor to oversee compliance. Monitors are expected to complete their assignments within a few years and to leave the local police force capable of monitoring itself and responding effectively to any future officer misconduct. Lessons learned from the early experiences of federal monitoring of local police agencies can offer other jurisdictions models of how to work efficiently with their monitors or help them understand how to bring about police reform without federal intervention. This report examines how the Pittsburgh, PA, Bureau of Police responded to the consent decree and the extent to which changes made under the decree have been institutionalized. Figures and tables. This is a print on demand report.
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