University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name DOJ Investigation of Harvey Police Department PN-IL-0011
Docket / Court docket unknown ( No Court )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Policing
Attorney Organization U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Case Summary
Case summary not yet recorded
On December 12, 2008, the Special Litigation Section of the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division (DOJ) initiated an investigation of the City of Harvey, Illinois Police Department (HPD), pursuant to the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, 42 U.S.C. § 14141.

On January 18, 2012, the DOJ issued their findings. Though the DOJ did not find there to be a pattern or practice of constitutional or federal law violations, they did conclude that there were serious deficiencies in the operation of the HPD to create an unreasonable risk that constitutional violations will occur. Specifically, the DOJ noted a failure to provide sufficient descriptions of the nature of resistance encountered, often employing one-word descriptions. This made it practically impossible to know whether officers were using the appropriate amount of force. Such descriptions were casually reviewed by supervisors and rubber-stamped. Accordingly, the DOJ made recommendations for remedial measures concerning reporting, reviewing, and investigating use of force. They recommended reworking HPD's policies for the use of force, requiring watch commanders to respond to the scene of any incidents, implementing an early invention system, modifying internal affairs investigations, and revising the process of handling citizen complaints against officers.

The DOJ investigation was closed following these recommendations and has not been reopened.

Richard Jolly - 11/26/2014


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Unreasonable search and seizure
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
General
Excessive force
Incident/accident reporting & investigations
Plaintiff Type
U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 14141
Defendant(s) Harvey Police Department
Plaintiff Description DOJ investigation of use of force by the Harvey Police Department
Indexed Lawyer Organizations U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2012
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Federal Enforcement of Police Reform
By: Stephen Rushin (University of Illinois College of Law, University of California, Berkeley - Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program )
Citation: 82 Fordham Law Review 3189 (2014)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Panopticism for Police: Structural Reform Bargaining and Police Regulation by Data-Driven Surveillance
By: Mary D. Fan (University of Washington)
Citation: Forthcoming, 87 Washington L. Rev. __ (2012).
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  What Happens When Police Are Forced to Reform?
Written: Nov. 13, 2015
By: Kimbriell Kelly, Sarah Childress and Steven Rich (Frontline/Post)
Citation: Washington Post (Nov. 13, 2015)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
No documents currently in the collection
Judges None on record
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers None on record
Defendant's Lawyers None on record
Other Lawyers None on record

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