Over the last 15 years, only a handful of police officers have been tried and convicted of murder for causing a death while they were on-duty.
The trial of Derek Chauvin could change the course of policing in Minneapolis. In Chicago, the high-profile murder trial of former police officer Jason Van Dyke left an indelible mark on the city, its leadership and reform efforts.
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Fairley says transparency did improve, but a Department of Justice consent decree requiring court monitoring of reforms and new systems of accountability have had spotty results.
“That's like turning a battleship. Those changes don't happen overnight,” said Fairley. “The first few years, to be honest with you, have been kind of rough. The city has been found to not really be following the timelines that it's supposed to be held to.”
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