Cleveland, Justice Department Enter Deal To Monitor Police
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson agreed to enter into a deal with U.S. Department of Justice to monitor the pattern of work by police forces. The working style of the police will now be closely monitored. How the police officers use its force to deal with the community will now be closely watched by a body of 1,500 members under the supervision of a federal monitor.
The new reforms have been made in wake of the rising protests after a white Cleveland patrolman was acquitted of manslaughter charges in killing two unarmed black suspects in a 137-shot barrage of police gunfire following a high-speed chase in 2012.
Jackson informed that the new reforms have been decided nearly after five months of negotiations with the U.S. Justice Department, and it will cost too high. He also added that it will take years to implement. He said it will set an example for other cities as well.
“As we move forward, it is my strong belief that as other cities across this country address and look at their police issues in their communities, they will be able to say, ‘Let’s look at Cleveland because Cleveland has done it right,'” Jackson said.
Vanita Gupta, who directs Justice’s Civil Rights Division, said the 105-page agreement will seek for improvement in every aspect of police functioning; it will verify how Cleveland recruits its officers and how they are trained. The federally monitored program is the formation of a community police commission comprising of local civil rights advocates, business leaders, police union representatives and others.
“Constitutional policing is key to building trust between police departments and the communities they serve,” Gupta said. “As you know, the difficult task of rebuilding trust between police and the community is one that communities around the country are struggling with, and it is also one that is not new.”