Living in a suburb of Detroit I’ve been paying close attention to the recent Federal investigation of the city’s men in blue and the conclusion being drawn by the report is not good.
Federal investigators reached a bruising conclusion about Detroit police, condemning the department as the most troubled force they have seen in 10 years of scrutinizing police nationwide, according to documents obtained by the Free Press.
U.S. Justice Department officials who investigate police misconduct told Detroit police officials they “have never seen problems as embedded and entrenched as in the DPD,” according to documents prepared by Police Chief Jerry Oliver’s staff to brief the department’s 3,900 officers earlier this year.
Today, city and federal officials will discuss their plan to reduce the use of lethal force, end illegal detention of witnesses and improve conditions in police lockups. The agreement, scheduled to be detailed at noon in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in downtown Detroit, calls for a federal monitor to oversee the department for at least the next five years.
Documents given to officers in March quoted U.S. Justice Department officials as saying Detroit’s Police Department needs “strict judicial oversight.”
On Wednesday, Oliver said that even after 17 months on the job, he’s still learning how deep the trouble runs. “The last couple months here have been a real eye-opener,” he said.
Mental note to self: Don’t do anything in Detroit that could get you arrested. Not that any of this is really news to folks in the area. We’ve heard rumors of how corrupt and screwed up the DPD has been for years. The amazing thing is that it has taken this long for someone to do something about it.