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Cleveland submits revised use-of-force policy to federal judge

[JURIST] The city of Cleveland [official website] on Wednesday submitted a revised use-of-force policy [motion, PDF] to a federal judge on Wednesday. Judge Solomon Oliver Jr. of the US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio [official website] is overseeing an agreement [AP report] by the city to reform the police department. The agreement [JURIST report] between the city and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] is revising how officers use lethal and non-lethal force. After a DOJ investigation [press release, PDF] found that officers used excessive force [JURIST report], the city and DOJ agreed to a court-monitored consent decree. The revisions call for officers to use de-escalation techniques as a method of avoiding the use of force. Officers will begin being trained under the new policy early next year.

Police use of force has been questioned on a national scale. In May Louisiana's governor signed into law [JURIST report] an amended hate crime pill that including police, EMS and firefighters in the protected class after instances where police were terrorized and attacked in response to numerous police shootings. Also in May a Baltimore police officer was acquitted [JURIST report] in the death of Freddie Gray, a black man who was injured in police custody and later died. In December the DOJ announced that it would be opening a full investigation [JURIST report] into the Chicago Police Department following the 2014 police shooting death of a black teenager.

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