National Police Misconduct Reporting Project

Federal Judge Threatens Oakland Police Department Over Misconduct

From the Oakland Tribune:

A federal judge ordered a probe Thursday into how Oakland police investigate officer-involved shootings and threatened the department with sanctions if misconduct is uncovered.

U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson also ordered Oakland to provide by June 8 additional information showing how it will complete already past-due internal affairs investigations stemming from last year’s Occupy protests. He threatened to levy daily fines against the city if it again misses deadlines to complete the investigations.

Henderson oversees police reforms ordered as part of the 2003 settlement of the Riders police misconduct case. On Thursday, he again questioned whether police would ever be able to fully implement the reforms and warned that he was still considering proceedings to place the department under federal control.

Robert Warshaw, the federal monitor overseeing Oakland police, raised concerns to Henderson about how the department investigates officer-involved shootings, including the proceedings of the Executive Force Review Board and subsequent deliberations by the police chief and his supervisors.

“This is of utmost concern, as uses of force and the manner in which they are investigated are among the most serious issues in (the Riders) case,” Henderson wrote, “and officer-involved shootings, many of which result in death, are the most grave possible uses of force.”

Creative Commons License
This work by Cato Institute is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.