Thursday, October 25, 2012

U.S. DOJ Civil Rights Division Police Discrimination Lawsuit

From: "U.S. Department of Justice" 
Date: October 23, 2012, 3:03:46 PM EDT
Subject: U.S. DOJ Civil Rights Division News

The Justice Department today announced that the town of East Haven, Conn., memorialized its intention to enter into a settlement agreement to resolve the department’s civil investigation of allegations that the East Haven Police Department (EHPD) engaged in a pattern or practice of unlawful discrimination against Latinos on account of their race, color or national origin. The proposed agreement also resolves allegations that EHPD engaged in a pattern or practice of use of excessive force, unconstitutional searches and seizures and retaliation against persons who witnessed police misconduct or criticized EHPD’s practices.


Joseph Maturo Jr., the mayor of East Haven, outlined in a letter of intent a schedule to obtain necessary approvals from other town officials to enter into a binding agreement that will lead to broad institutional changes in EHPD’s policies and practices. The proposed agreement builds on reforms initiated by the town and is intended to strengthen the community’s trust in EHPD. Once fully executed by the town, the proposed agreement will be filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut for approval.


“We are pleased that Mayor Maturo has made a clear commitment to rebuild the East Haven Police Department by agreeing to enter into a court-enforceable agreement that will result in constitutional and effective policing for all persons who live, work and travel in East Haven,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The proposed agreement will serve as a blueprint for sustainable reform that will provide the police department with the necessary tools and guidance it needs to restore trust from all segments of the East Haven community.” 


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