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1 EiMitch  Dec 3, 2014 5:18:24pm

Sounds mostly good to me, but I’m no expert. However, there are other federal laws already on the books which police departments across the nation are not complying with. For example, the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act requires PDs to compile annual reports regarding excessive force, and they’re not doing it. So I think #4 should apply to this and other relevant existing laws as well.

2 Kragar  Dec 3, 2014 5:19:50pm

re: #1 EiMitch

Sounds mostly good to me, but I’m no expert. However, there are other federal laws already on the books which police departments across the nation are not complying with. For example, the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act requires PDs to compile annual reports regarding excessive force, and they’re not doing it. So I think #4 should apply to this and other relevant existing laws as well.

I sort of thought part 3, the review of policy and procedures covered this, but I can make that more clear.

3 Kragar  Dec 3, 2014 5:22:30pm

I have edited point 3.

4 William Barnett-Lewis  Dec 3, 2014 7:56:32pm

It’s fine. Great idea even. Meaningless since it’d take a revolution to get it passed and that’s not going to happen while the majority of Americans are fat and happy watching American Idiot or Dancing with the Washed Up Stars.

The police have always existed to serve and protect the 1%. They’re doing just fine as things are by that score.

5 Kragar  Dec 3, 2014 8:00:24pm

re: #4 William Barnett-Lewis

It’s fine. Great idea even. Meaningless since it’d take a revolution to get it passed and that’s not going to happen while the majority of Americans are fat and happy watching American Idiot or Dancing with the Washed Up Stars.

The police have always existed to serve and protect the 1%. They’re doing just fine as things are by that score.

I’m sick and tired of falling back on “nothing can be done”. If we never even try to broach the issue, nothing ever will be done.

6 First As Tragedy, Then As Farce  Dec 3, 2014 8:01:48pm

For ages and ages I’ve thought that individual law enforcement officers’ disciplinary records should be public; and that whenever a police department hires an officer who has been previously fired from another department, they should publicly disclose the fact that they’re hiring him and that they are fully aware of the circumstances of the previous firing.

We (and by ‘we’, I mean ‘the media’) dig up all sorts of dirt on every electoral candidate, and for the most part none of their job descriptions involve potentially breaking into our homes and taking our freedom (or lives) away with impunity. The enforcement personnel of government should be subject to every bit as much scrutiny as the people who set the policies they’re meant to enforce.

7 austin_blue  Dec 3, 2014 8:01:50pm

Point #3 appears vague. 10% deviation from what? Big cities? Small cities? Rural? What is the baseline? If the baseline is based on a national average of routine violence, a small police force with only occasional violence against its citizens, no matter how egregious, could skate.

I think it’s a good idea, but that hard-and-fast number may be problematical without clarification.

8 First As Tragedy, Then As Farce  Dec 3, 2014 8:06:04pm
a record of violence against suspects greater than 10% of the national average

This leads to a scenario in which every department can continually increase its ‘record of violence’ by 9.9% of the national average, which by itself causes the national average to rise. Rinse and repeat.

9 Kragar  Dec 3, 2014 8:07:01pm

re: #7 austin_blue

Point #3 appears vague. 10% deviation from what? Big cities? Small cities? Rural? What is the baseline? If the baseline is based on a national average of routine violence, a small police force with only occasional violence against its citizens, no matter how egregious, could skate.

I think it’s a good idea, but that hard-and-fast number may be problematical without clarification.

A good point, one that I was hoping point 1 could mitigate. Maybe measure it per capita as opposed to a region average, so it adjust for population?

10 Kragar  Dec 3, 2014 8:10:06pm

re: #8 First As Tragedy, Then As Farce

This leads to a scenario in which every department can continually increase its ‘record of violence’ by 9.9% of the national average, which by itself causes the national average to rise. Rinse and repeat.

I’d rather believe that police forces on average aren’t trying to get away with the maximum amount of violence they can. This way, it would put the focus on the worst offenders quickly and hopefully bring numbers down over several years.

11 William Barnett-Lewis  Dec 3, 2014 8:17:30pm

re: #5 Kragar

I’m sick and tired of falling back on “nothing can be done”. If we never even try to broach the issue, nothing ever will be done.

Fine. Brick wall is right there. I’ll have the asprin for you when you get tired of hitting it.

With our current federal government, as it will be for at least the next two years, Nothing Can Be Done. Sorry to piss in your cornflakes.

12 ThomasLite  Dec 4, 2014 5:08:34am
…has a record of violence against suspects greater than 10% of the national average based on…

Do you mean “10% greater than the national average”? It doesn’t seem to quite work as currently written.

And how will you measure this?
Rate of complaints? If anything, I suspect this will give more incentive to shove incidents under the carpet with no paperwork.
How to account for severity of the incident? Not doing so seems like a loophole one could drive a truck through.

13 iossarian  Dec 4, 2014 7:16:07am

IMHO, points 1 and 2 are difficult to implement in a useful way as written. The reality is that organizations like the DoJ and FBI are chronically understaffed (thanks, small government-ers) and imposing a mandate on individual cases like this could be counterproductive by increasing backlogs.

However I think point 3, or something like it, has a lot of potential, because that’s where you get people at the local organization level to pay attention, if you make whatever federal funding they get contingent on maintaining a rate of death-by-cop that is in line with national norms.

In the petition, you could maybe leave open the exact deviation from the norm that would trigger action, to be determined by the implementation, if it gets that point? Maybe something like:

3) That the DoJ determine an acceptable level of deviation from national rates of police violence, including violence against suspects, with appropriate adjustment for smaller populations, where variation will be greater. Any department exceeding this deviation will automatically be investigated for compliance with existing policies and procedures, and may face penalties and criminal prosecution as described below.

?

14 Kragar  Dec 4, 2014 10:07:01am

I tried to address peoples’ concerns with point 3

15 Kragar  Dec 4, 2014 5:10:58pm

deleted


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