DOJ proves Chicago police practiced racism and violence in Black communities


Black and minority communities in Chicago were terrorized by the Chicago Police Department. According to a report by the Department of Justice, the CPD had a pattern of and practicing the use of deadly force that was in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution.

The data was compiled over the past 12 months through interviews with city leaders, current and former police officials, police officers, 1000 members of the community, and more than 90 community organizations.

Some of the findings revealed that CPD officers do not fully report their uses of force and that supervisors do not appropriately review these uses of force; CPD does not adequately train its officers to use the appropriate amount of force; when investigations do occur, they are glacially slow and staffed by overworked and undertrained investigators who often fail to obtain basic witness statements and evidence; officers are rarely held accountable for misconduct, and when they are, discipline is unpredictable and ineffective.

The CPD began to gain national attention for their abuse following the murder of LaQuan McDonald. McDonald, a Black teen, was shot 16 times by a White officer Jason Van Dyke. The video was captured on dash-cam, but Chicago officials attempted to hold the release of the video until a judge ordered that the public had the right to view it.

The case caused the Department of Justice to investigate the CPD and their practices. Police have done little to deter violence. In fact, Chicago just experienced its deadliest year in decades as over 700 people were murdered in 2016.

Reform of the CPD and other police department across the nation must be a priority in America. Donald Trump has yet to reveal if and how his administration will confront police violence.

A.R. Shaw
A.R. Shaw

A.R. Shaw is an author and journalist who documents culture, politics, and entertainment. He has covered The Obama White House, the summer Olympics in London, and currently serves as Lifestyle Editor for Rolling Out magazine. Follow his journey on Twitter @arshaw and Instagram @arshaw23.

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