Originally Posted on January 13, 2017
PRESIDENT DEAN C. ANGLEO, SR. SENT OUT THE FOLLOWING PRESS RELEASE IN WHICH HE EXPRESSED CONCERNS ABOUT THE "LIGHTENING SPEED" OF THE DOJ INVESTIGATION. HE IS HOPEFUL THE REPORT WILL INCLUDE THE CONCERNS AND ISSUES THAT IMPACT CHICAGO POLICE OFFICERS PATROLLING THE CITY'S STREETS, YET ALSO HAS ONGOING CONCERNS THAT THE INVESTIGATION WAS RUSHED FOR POLITICAL PURPOSES.
The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division announced its intentions to conduct a Pattern-or-Practice Investigation into the Chicago Police Department on Monday December 7, 2015. Prior to their formal announcement, President Angelo was already on the schedule to meet with the DOJ in Washington D.C. On December 9, 2015, along with National FOP President Chuck Canterbury and Executive Director Jim Pasco, President Angelo met with top ranking DOJ officials. At the time, we had an opportunity to express numerous concerns over the upcoming investigation. President Angelo raised issues ranging from Officer safety concerns, the lack of and improperly functioning department equipment, also the lack of and insufficient training (including insufficient firearm training), sparse promotional opportunities, document retention, the department’s repeated failures to include the Lodge in any meaningful processes, as well as an on-going lack of concern by the Independent Police Review Authority to complete timely investigations; which by the way continues to this day. We were guaranteed that ALL voices would be heard. President Angelo left that meeting with an understanding that the Pattern-or-Practice Investigation would be conducted fairly, impartially and in a timeframe sufficient to be considered complete and unbiased.
Despite those initial conversations, what has resulted is one of the quickest Pattern-or-Practice Investigations ever conducted by DOJ into an agency the size of the CPD. In all practicality, to have completed this investigation in LESS than one year’s time brings to surface several concerns: the main one being timeliness. Completing an investigation into the 12,000 member Chicago Police Department, and in a City with over 2 million citizens in less than one year clearly brings to light that the outgoing DOJ wanted to issue a report before the new Administration takes over on January 20, 2017. What also remains to be seen is whether or not the Report might be considered compromised, or incomplete as a result of rushing to get it out before the Presidential Inauguration. Everyone who reads this document should be as concerned about the timeliness of this Report as the FOP.
Despite what many are considering a “lightning speed” investigation, the Lodge remains hopeful that the Report offers the careful review, not only into the areas that we highlighted in our initial December, 2015 meeting; but also into the interests of ALL of Chicago “stakeholders” and not only those who yell the loudest. To that end, the Lodge must continue to expect that the DOJ highlights and addresses the many struggles and frustrations that the women and men of the Chicago Police Department shared during multiple face-to-face interviews.
The Lodge Administration and counsel met with Investigators on numerous occasions over the past year. The final meeting between the Lodge and the DOJ actually took place as recently as December 13, 2016, which was followed by a fourth “open invitation” meeting opportunity with several Officers that was facilitated at the FOP Hall on December 20, 2016. It was during these events that the DOJ Investigators were able to meet with as many rank and file Officers who shared their personal experiences on being a Chicago Police Officer as well as what they face day in and day out as a Chicago Police Officer.