The Department of Justice released a scathing report on the Baltimore Police Department on Wednesday. The report found systematic deficiencies and a pattern of unconstitutional and racially biased behavior in the department.
The DOJ found that BPD routinely made unconstitutional stops, searches and arrests, used excessive force, retaliated against people engaging in constitutionally-protected expression, targeted African-Americans communities, failed to adequately investigate sexual assault allegations, and failed to hold officers accountable for wrongdoing. Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis joins Tom by phone to respond to the report.
Also joining Tom this morning are two reporters with extensive knowledge of policing issues: Kevin Rector is reporter for the Baltimore Sun who’s written extensively about the DOJ report. Lynh Bui is a reporter for the Washington Post who covers crime and public safety issues in Prince George's County. That county's police department dealt with a similar DOJ investigation of abusive police practices in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and signed a consent decree in 2004 pledging reforms. The two reporters discuss the findings of the DOJ's BPD report, the response from the community and the next steps in what will likely be a long and expensive process of reforming Baltimore's Police Department.