University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name U.S. v. Warren PN-OH-0004
Docket / Court 4:12-cv-00086-BYP ( N.D. Ohio )
State/Territory Ohio
Case Type(s) Policing
Attorney Organization U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Case Summary
In 2006, the U.S. Department of Justice opened an investigation into policing practices in Warren, Ohio. {ADD MORE HERE}

On January 13, 2012, the Department of Justice filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio against the City of Warren, Ohio, and ... read more >
In 2006, the U.S. Department of Justice opened an investigation into policing practices in Warren, Ohio. {ADD MORE HERE}

On January 13, 2012, the Department of Justice filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio against the City of Warren, Ohio, and its police department. The United States, represented by the Department of Justice, brought the action under 42 U.S.C. § 14141 and asked the court for a declaratory judgment that Warren Police Department's ("WPD") policing practices infringed on individuals' constitutionally-protected rights. The United States also requested an order that the WPD cease such practices by implementing policies to remedy their transgressive effect.

According to the complaint, the WPD's failure to implement adequate policies to guide, train, supervise, and monitor its officers resulted in a pattern of conduct involving the use of excessive force. The complaint also included allegations that the WPD's policy governing the intake and investigation of complaints was inadequate and, furthermore, that it had failed to adequately review incidents involving the use of force and discipline officers who engaged in misconduct.

The parties quickly reached a settlement, which the Court (Judge Benita Y. Pearson) approved January 26, 2012. The agreement required the WPD to adopt new protocols involving the use a force, develop procedures to document and evaluate uses of force, institute systems for tracking and investigating citizens' complaints, and implement training encompassing constitutional policing. In addition, the DOJ reserved the right to monitor the WPD's compliance with the agreement, and the Court retained jurisdiction.

As of November 28, 2014, there have been no new developments.

David Postel - 01/27/2014


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Unreasonable search and seizure
Content of Injunction
Auditing
Implement complaint/dispute resolution process
Monitor/Master
Monitoring
Recordkeeping
Reporting
Defendant-type
Law-enforcement
General
Excessive force
Failure to discipline
Failure to supervise
Failure to train
Grievance Procedures
Inadequate citizen complaint investigations and procedures
Incident/accident reporting & investigations
Pattern or Practice
Search policies
Plaintiff Type
U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 14141
Defendant(s) City of Warren
Plaintiff Description United States of America
Indexed Lawyer Organizations U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2012 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
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)
4:12−cv−00086 (N.D. Ohio) 02/10/2012
PN-OH-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Re: Warren Police Department 03/02/2006
PN-OH-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Justice Department Settles with Warren, Ohio, Police Department 01/13/2012
PN-OH-0004-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Special Litigation Section
Complaint 01/13/2012
PN-OH-0004-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Agreement 01/26/2012
PN-OH-0004-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Special Litigation Section
Compliance Assessment Letter 12/18/2013
PN-OH-0004-0005.pdf | Detail
Appendix - Settlement Agreement Compliance Chart 12/18/2013
PN-OH-0004-0006.pdf | Detail
Compliance Assessment Letter 01/21/2015
PN-OH-0004-0007.pdf | Detail
Settlement Agreement Compliance Chart 01/21/2015
PN-OH-0004-0008.pdf | Detail
Judges Pearson, Benita Yalonda (N.D. Ohio) [Magistrate]
PN-OH-0004-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Austin, Roy L. (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004
Bharara, Preetinder S. (New York)
PN-OH-0004-0002
Brown Cutlar, Shanetta Y. (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0001
Dettelbach, Steven M (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004
Geissler, R. Jonas (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004 | PN-OH-0004-0005
Heyer, Michelle L (Ohio)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004 | PN-OH-0004-9000
Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003
Morse, Thomas Jackson (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0007
Mygatt, Timothy D (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004
Perez, Thomas E. (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004
Smith, Jonathan Mark (District of Columbia)
PN-OH-0004-0003 | PN-OH-0004-0004
Defendant's Lawyers Hicks, Gregory V. (Ohio)
PN-OH-0004-0001
Sanders, James E. (Ohio)
PN-OH-0004-9000
Taylor, Hilary S. (Ohio)
PN-OH-0004-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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