Mayor Frank Jackson joined Roland Martin on NewsOne Now to discuss the settlement that was reached between the Cleveland Police Department and the Department of Justice as well as the verdict in the Michael Brelo trial.
The DOJ uncovered extensive abuse by the Cleveland Police Department over a three year period, which marks the second time in the last ten years that the Justice Department has provided oversight and investigated their policing practices.
A 105-page report produced by the Department of Justice details massive failures by the Cleveland Police Department, citing them for:
- The unnecessary and excessive use of deadly force, including shootings and head strike with impact weapons.
- The unnecessary, excessive or retaliatory use of less lethal force including tasers, chemical spray and fists.
- Excessive force against persons who are mentally ill or in crisis, including in cases where the officers were called exclusively for a welfare check
- The employment of poor and dangerous tactics that place officers in situation s where avoidable force becomes inevitable and places officers and civilians at unnecessary risk.
Mayor Jackson told Martin he “welcomed the opportunity” the DOJ has given them to “make real substantive and sustainable reforms” through the release of their report and terms agreed upon in the consent decree.
“The conclusion that we reached in terms of the settlement is a very good conclusion because they (DOJ) provided infrastructure that would make it more difficult for police officers to do things in a way that is not right and proper.”
Mayor Jackson also told Martin, “there is a need of cultural change that has to be made and if it is not made, no consent decree will resolve it. It is those intangible things that you have to accomplish that really will make a difference.”
Jackson later highlighted the consent decree detailing very specific “duties and responsibilities” for supervisors within the Cleveland police department to report what they believe to be “transgressions.”
“If reports are made that have boiler plate or canned language that is not detailed enough for that supervisor to really know what is going on, then that supervisor has a duty to and responsibility to go to that officer who made that report and ask for those relevant details.”
He continued, “If that supervisor does not do that, then that supervisor will be disciplined.”
Watch Roland Martin and Mayor Frank Jackson discuss the Department of Justice settlement with the Cleveland Police Department in the video clip above.
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