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Who can say whether of not RT’s title was meant as satire or not?  Surely not I.  But for the rest, they played it straight.

Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams (R) and Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson (Reuters / Aaron Josefczyk)

Officials in Cleveland, Ohio have reached a deal with the Department of Justice to settle complaints contained in a scathing federal review of the city’s police force released late last year.

Cleveland has signed a 105-page, comprehensive “consent decree” with the Department of Justice, agreeing to implement a series of programs improving its police practices.

The settlement agreement calls for numerous rewrites to the Cleveland Division of Police (CDP) rulebook on using force, including the ban on pistol-whipping (striking suspects with guns instead of batons) better policies on the use of Tasers and pepper spray, and a ban on neck holds as a method of subduing suspects.

“The Decree will only terminate after the City can demonstrate to a federal judge sustained and substantial compliance with its terms – and there are certain specific metrics set forth for that,” said US Attorney Steven M. Dettelbach, of the Northern District of Ohio.

Among the areas covered by the document are new policies on use of force; establishment of a Community Police Commission to solicit input from residents; better equipment for the officers – which may include body cameras; and training officers to deal with mental health cases.

Within a year, the CDP has to implement a “single, uniform reporting system” for use of force, with three classification levels, ranging from minor pain and disorientation (Level 1) to “serious physical injury” and lethal force (Level 3). Internal Affairs will have a new Force Investigation Team (FIT), which will examine all Level 3 cases and any accusations of criminal misconduct made against officers.

Dettelbach also said the program would require sensitivity training on “cultural competency and avoiding implicit biases”, including racial and other stereotypes, as well as a major reorganization of the Office of Professional Standards and the Police Review Board. The mayor of Cleveland is to create a new office of Police Inspector General, and appoint the inspector.

This comprehensive settlement – developed with input from a broad spectrum of the Cleveland community – could serve as a model for the nation in addressing police and community relations,” said Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio).

In December, a DoJ report concluded that “systematic deficiencies,” “inadequate training” and “ineffective policies” were rampant within the ranks of the Cleveland Police Department between 2010 and 2013, and that “CDP officers too often use unnecessary and unreasonable force in violation of the Constitution.”

At the time, the city was still reeling from the November 22 police shooting that took the life of Tamir Rice, a 13-year-old African-American boy shot down on a Cleveland playground by the CPD.”

Then: Brelo verdict, Holder wants to establish trust, Obama’s DoJ and Seattle, Newark, Albuquerque and Ferguson have all been subjected to federal scrutiny, Obama’s pledge of millions for body cameras, etc.

(U.S. Attorney Steven M. Dettelbach of the Northern District of Ohio Delivers Remarks Announcing a Settlement Agreement with the Justice Department Over the Pattern or Practice Investigation into the Cleveland Division of Police | OPA | Department of Justice: transcript from the link)

Oh, yes, and in the middle of the RT piece was this Tweet from Shaun King: ‘

“A civilan will now OVERSEE Internal Affairs in Cleveland. A huge deal. The question will be who appoints that civilian.12:11 PM – 26 May 2015, but I checked his account, and he seems to have gotten more reality-based by now.
 As in just one case: 6 Albuquerque city councilors held closed-door meetings with DOJ monitor, possibly in violation of law:
 “The Albuquerque Police Department’s monitor over its agreement with the US Department of Justice, James Ginger, promised transparency, but KOB has learned he had private, closed-door meetings with six city councilors this week – skirting open meetings laws and possibly breaking them.
It is somewhat baffling, as just last week, city councilors passionately and publicly questioned why Ginger wouldn’t show up to answer their questions in a public forum.Then, on Monday, councilors did a 180 and met with Ginger and the DOJ behind closed doors, and no one knew it was happening.
KOB has confirmed that Ginger filled his Monday afternoon with 30-minute closed-door briefings with city councilors.” etc.
Meanwhile:“CLEVELAND – Sources tell newsnet5.com Reporter Kristin Volk that the Cuyahoga County Sheriff Department has still not interviewed Cleveland Police Officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback as part of their investigation into the death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice.

Loehmann fatally shot Tamir last November at the Cudell Recreation Center. He had an airsoft gun, which shoots non-lethal plastic pellets. Garmback drove the patrol car involved in the incident.

Sheriff Clifford Pinkney and a team of detectives took over the investigation in January. Last week, Pinkney announced the investigation is almost complete.

Sources also tell Volk the Sheriff’s department has extended an invitation to Loehmann and Garmback to talk to them as part of their investigation, but they have not accepted.”

Have.not.accepted.

The trial of the Kop Killer Mary O’Callaghan (LAPD) is underway, but she’s not being charged with anything but ‘assault under the color of law’.  It was a bad and grisly death, and I’ll bring more as the trial proceeds.  #AlesiaThomas was killed by the LAPD.

(Cross-posted at Café Babylon. net)

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