Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced on Tuesday that she had filed a lawsuit to finally achieve the long-awaited court-enforceable consent decree that would get the ball rolling on at least some modicum of police reform in Chicago, the Washington Post reports. Madigan’s office is suing Chicago to obtain the decree, which would implement changes to officer training programs and address some discriminatory practices of the CPD.
In January, during the final days of the Obama administration, the Justice Department, then helmed by Attorney General Loretta Lynch, issued a length critical report on Chicago police department practices, the result of an investigation launched in 2015 that found some of its members routinely use excessive force that violates the constitutional rights of Chicago inhabitants, particularly if they happen to be black or Latino.
Of course Trump’s AG, Jeff Sessions, who has called cops the “most mistreated people in this country” is not going to support anything being done about this or even lend credence to the existence of a problem. In April, Sessions ordered that all reform agreements painstakingly reached between the DOJ’s civil rights division and local police departments be reviewed by his deputies, leaving little hope that they would not be compromised.
Madigan asserted that if the Justice Department is to be of no help to her, then her office will step into that role “The new administration at the Department of Justice has made it clear it will no longer seek a consent decree in Chicago…. We are essentially stepping into the shoes of the Department of Justice that the DOJ has abandoned at this point.”