Phoenix/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on June 13, 2024
Justice Department Set to Disclose Findings on Phoenix Police Probe, Possible Reforms LoomSource: Wikipedia/United States Department of Justice

The U.S. Department of Justice has slated an announcement earlier today, June 13, regarding a civil rights concern tied to Phoenix. After a two-year investigation of the Phoenix Police Department, which scrutinized possible excessive force, discriminatory practices, and treatment of the homeless population, the Justice Department could potentially mandate significant reforms and impose hefty penalties on both the city and its police force, as confirmed to FOX 10 by Investigators.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division will be leading the press conference, while the DOJ itself has yet to clarify if the announcement is tied to the ongoing investigation into the Phoenix Police Department, though it comes after reports of a meeting between Phoenix Police Chief Michael Sullivan and DOJ investigators signaled one of the concluding steps in the civil rights probe, FOX 10 Investigator Justin Lum reported, Wednesday's press conference is likely to disclose findings and any ensuing measures.

The investigation, as ABC15 notes, encompassed a range of issues, such as the protection of First Amendment rights, response to people in behavioral or mental health crises, plus examining the department's policy on use-of-force incidents. City council members relayed to ABC15 that they were promised early access to the report only if they agreed to enter negotiations for a consent decree with the DOJ, a precondition that left city leaders both "surprised and disappointed."

The DOJ's expected declaration at 10 a.m. tomorrow promises to bring closure to a city suspended in anticipation of the possible repercussions, the long-awaited announcement should elucidate the city's course of action in response to what could be a damning depiction of its police force's operations and policies, in December 2023, ABC15 Investigators learned of a preceding November meeting likely pivotal to the investigation's findings, but clarity on the outcomes will only arise from the specifics divulged at the forthcoming press conference, to be streamed live by ABC15.