Futterman: Chicago Police Use of Force Policy Draft is "Out of Step with Best Practice"

CPD’s Latest Draft of Use of Force Policy Is Out of Step with Best Practices; Sustained Monitoring of Federal Consent Decree is Needed
Northwestern Pritzker School of Law
March 17, 2017

The second draft of the Chicago Police Department’s use of force policy is out of step with best practice in policing and underscores the need for “sustained external monitoring and oversight provided by a federal consent decree,” according to Sheila A. Bedi, Attorney with the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center and Associate Clinical Professor of Law at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law and Craig Futterman, Clinical Professor of Law, University of Chicago Law School.

“Our analysis of the new draft use of force policy and the Reform Framework underscore the need for the Chicago Police Department to be subject to a consent decree that is informed by the communities who have borne the brunt of CPD’s brutality over the decades, monitored by an independent, credible third party and rigorously enforced,” they wrote in comments submitted to CPD. “Even model use of force policies cannot by themselves address the years-long pattern of excessive force and civil rights violations in Chicago. The CPD has long maintained paper policies, such as those for the use of in-car cameras, which have never been enforced. The CPD and the Mayor have proved that they are incapable of putting an end to their pattern of ongoing civil rights violations on their own. The problems and culture that have facilitated police abuse are too entrenched and run too deep. It is critically important that we do not waste this historic opportunity for real and enduring change.”

Bedi and Futterman’s comments stated: “It is also long past time for half measures. Nothing short of the sustained external monitoring and oversight provided by a federal consent decree will bring the change that the people of Chicago and their officers need and deserve.”

Full text of comments submitted by Bedi and Futterman (PDF)

Craig B. Futterman