Miscellaneous: News and Publications

The Civil Rights Division's Pattern and Practice Police Reform Work: 1994-Present

Author: 
United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division
Publisher: 
United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division

"Today, our country is engaged in a critically important conversation about community-police relations.  This report describes one of the United States Department of Justice’s central tools for accomplishing police reform, restoring police-community trust, and strengthening officer and public safety – the Civil Rights Division’s enforcement of the civil prohibition on a “pattern or practice” of policing that violates the Constitution or other federal laws (the Department’s other tools are described later in this document). Pattern-or-practice cases begin with investigations of allegations of systemic police misconduct and, when the allegations are substantiated, end with comprehensive agreements designed to support constitutional and effective policing and restore trust between police and communities. The Division has opened 11 new pattern-or-practice investigations and negotiated 19 new reform agreements since 2012 alone, often with the substantial assistance of the local United States Attorney’s Offices.
The purpose of this report to make the Division’s police reform work more accessible and transparent.  The usual course of a pattern-or-practice case, with examples and explanations for why the Division approaches this work the way it does, is set forth in this report."

Behind the Badge: Adid Protests and Calls for Reform, How Police View Their Jobs, Key Issues and Recent Fatal Encounters Between Blacks and Police

Author: 
Rich Morin, Kim Parker, Renee Stepler & Andrew Mercer
Publisher: 
Pew Research Center

"The wide-ranging survey, one of the largest ever conducted with a nationally representative sample of police, draws on the attitudes and experiences of nearly 8,000 policemen and women from departments with at least 100 officers. It comes at a crisis point in America’s relationship with the men and women who enforce its laws, precipitated by a series of deaths of black Americans during encounters with the police that have energized a vigorous national debate over police conduct and methods.
Within America’s police and sheriff’s departments, the survey finds that the ramifications of these deadly encounters have been less visible than the public protests, but no less profound. Three-quarters say the incidents have increased tensions between police and blacks in their communities. About as many (72%) say officers in their department are now less willing to stop and question suspicious persons. Overall, more than eight-in-ten (86%) say police work is harder today as a result of these high-profile incidents."

Also see: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/02/08/a-closer-look-at-police-...