CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Police Department has released a draft of the consent decree calling for sweeping changes of the police department.

The consent decree is a court agreement that will govern reforms in the Chicago Police Department, including everything from use of force and training, to officer accountability.

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CBS 2’s Derrick Blakley reports in New Orleans, a consent decree implemented five years ago had a dramatic effect on brutality complaints.


An oversight report last year said, “The monitoring team did not locate any litigation for the past two years, alleging excessive use of force.”

A study of 23 departments under consent decrees, including New Orleans, found lawsuits dropped dramatically – from 23 to 36% each year, in each city.

Sheila Bedi, a professor at Northwestern Law School, is part of the consent decree negotiations. She says she expects a similar result in Chicago.

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“The city of Chicago should expect to pay out far less in police misconduct litigation because police officers will be forced to be in compliance with the constitution,” Bedi stated.

In April of 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions signaling a shift in the Justice Department’s efforts to reform police departments.

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According to CBS News, Sessions has long been critical of federally enforced reforms to police departments. He said he preferred collaborative reform, but this memo requires review of even collaborative reform efforts.

Sessions complained about the Baltimore’s consent decree, releasing a statement that it “will require the court and a highly-paid monitor to govern every detail of how the Baltimore Police Department functions for the foreseeable future.”

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“I have grave concerns that some provisions of this decree will reduce the lawful powers of the police department and result in a less safe city,” Sessions wrote, according to CBS News.

The deadline for the draft agreement for Chicago’s consent decree is September 1, followed by a public hearing before Judge Dow decides whether to approve the consent decree.

More On The Consent Decree:

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Consent Decree Released By Chicago Police Department: 5 Fast Facts

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