Public to weigh in on consent decree Thursday

Posted at 11:09 PM, Apr 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-06 06:10:15-04

The public will get a chance to weigh in Thursday about the city's consent decree. The Department of Justice attempted to delay the hearing but that motion was denied by a federal judge.

"It's shameful and frankly quite ridiculous that they sought to delay the implementation of this decree," said David Rocha of the ACLU. "They don't need 90 days to review the decree because they wrote it." 

In the motion to deny, the federal judge said a delay would undermine the public's trust in the reform process.

RELATED: Mayor, police department react to consent decree

Those opposing the DOJ's attempt to delay the hearing say that oversight doesn't change simply because of new leaders, particularly Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

In January, Pugh and then U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch announced the consent decree in a joint press conference. At the time, police commissioner Kevin Davis said officers would benefit tremendously from the agreement.

But some Baltimore residents don't think that police reform will change anything and think the city's priorities are off.

"They need to put the money back into education and recreational centers in schools," said Darrell Grant, a Baltimore resident. "How is it possible that the governor cut hundreds of millions from schools but invested it into jails and prison systems -- that's ridiculous." 

Other residents, like Wayne Bahner, said it's time to take politics out of it. "A lot of these policemen are scared to do their jobs, they need to take the politicians and leave them alone and let these men and women do their job, like they're trained to do."  

The public hearing will begin Thursday, April 6 at 9:30 a.m. Those wishing to speak must submit their comments in writing or sign up.

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