WASHINGTON - The Justice Department is moving forward with plans to collect data on how often law enforcement officers use force and how often civilians die in police custody.
The FBI plans to begin a pilot program early next year to gather use-of-force data. The earliest participants would be the largest law enforcement agencies, as well as major federal agencies such as the FBI, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
In additional, Attorney General Loretta Lynch has issued a memo to federal law enforcement agencies notifying them of their obligation to report deaths that occur in their custody.
“Accurate and comprehensive data on the use of force by law enforcement is essential to an informed and productive discussion about community-police relations,” said Lynch. “The initiatives we are announcing today are vital efforts toward increasing transparency and building trust between law enforcement and the communities we serve.
“In the days ahead, the Department of Justice will continue to work alongside our local, state, tribal and federal partners to ensure that we put in place a system to collect data that is comprehensive, useful and responsive to the needs of the communities we serve.”
(© 2016 WTSP)