Baltimore Police to Tackle Deep, Systemic Failures

BALTIMORE (AP) — The findings of a federal investigation into Baltimore police practices and the court-enforceable agreement to improve policing in the city speak to much broader failures rooted in the agency’s culture.

The Justice Department began investigating the Baltimore force after Freddie Gray’s death in April 2015. Its report last August found that officers routinely stopped large numbers of people in poor, black neighborhoods for dubious reasons.

The city approved the agreement Thursday and submitted it to a federal judge.

The agreement discourages the arrests of citizens for “quality-of-life offenses” such as loitering, littering or minor traffic violations. It also requires a supervisor to sign off on requests to take someone into custody for a minor infraction.

Before a judge signs the agreement, a public hearing will be held so residents can weigh in on it.

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