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It focuses on criminal justice issues. Its aim is improving police accountability and the nation's criminal justice system. It faces long odds as America grows more repressive. Police behavior during Chicago's NATO summit is Exhibit A. More on that below.
In 2007, Futterman helped prepare a report titled " The Chicago Police Department's Broken System." It revealed damning evidence of systemic brutality, illegal searches, false arrests, racial targeting, sexual assaults, shoddy investigations, a culture of silence, and apartheid justice.
Disadvantaged Blacks, Latinos, poor, and street demonstrators are most affected.
It called Chicago police a "regime of not knowing." They even get away with murder because of "a deep commitment to the machinery of denial." A culture of silence is encouraged and enforced.
Chicago mayors, City Councilmen and women, along with top police officials share culpability. Main report findings, included:
- compared to other large cities, excessive force complaints are 94% less likely to be sustained by top Chicago Police Department (CPD) officials;
- in over 85% of cases, accused officers aren't even interviewed, except for a brief form report;
- repeat offenders account for most abuses; and
- top officials are most responsible for cultivating and supporting a violence-prone system.
The Chicago Justice Project (CJP) independently evaluates city criminal justice agencies. Its purpose is promoting reform and accountability.
In October 2009, it published a 10-year analysis of Chicago Police Board (CPB) cases and decisions . It examined charges filed and rulings. It covered the period January 1999 - December 2008.
It found a "startling difference in outcomes experienced between civilian employees and sworn officers." Disciplinary action against police offenders is lax and undisciplined. Few are punished. Brutality is whitewashed. Serious flaws remain uncorrected. Justice is denied.