It was a blistering report announced by the Department of Justice on Friday. The Chicago Police Department has misused excessive force and hasn’t held officers accountable or trained them properly. The DOJ began looking into the department after dashcam videos were released in 2015 of a police officer-involved shooting that killed Laquan McDonald.
Some of Chicago’s most prominent leaders want President Donald Trump to support the Department of Justice report and to have a face-to-face conversation with him about the violence in Chicago.
“What about the high crime rate?” asked Bishop Larry Trotter of the Sweet Holy Spirit Church. “We as leaders need to meet with the President-Elect Trump.”
Bishop Trotter and other religious leaders met Saturday. Many of them believe the DOJ report is a step in the right direction, but doesn’t tell the whole story.
“We need to talk about race relationships and police relationships,” said Bishop James Dukes of the Liberation Christian Church. “We still live in a society when black men see blue lights behind them and they get scared.”
Next the city will begin negotiations with the Justice Department on a consent decree, in which a federal monitor would be appointed to oversee change in the police department.
Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson welcomes the changes and said they’ve already started implementing reforms by hiring more officers, adding body cameras department-wide and increasing training.
“Since I became superintendent you’ve seen that we are doing things differently,” said Superintendent Johnson on Good Day Chicago Saturday. “We are getting videos out a lot quicker, we are taking decisive action when we see problem areas and so we are going to build on that, but believe me we recognize that CPD has to get better.”