Accused of Excessive Force, Albuquerque Police Agree to Fed's Reforms

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Facing scrutiny amid a rash of cop shootings in the past few years, Albuquerque's police department has agreed to reforms in a deal with the U.S. Justice Department.

The agreement, announced Friday, follows accusations of excessive force from the department, which has had 41 police shootings, 27 of them fatal, since 2010, according to the Associated Press. The force will now be required to be independently monitored to make sure it implements new training and protocols for investigating officer shootings, among other reforms.

Albuquerque could spend $4 to $6 million on the reforms in the first year, Mayor Richard Berry said.

"I am confident that, with the cooperation of city leaders and brave law enforcement officials, we will take significant steps to restore trust with local citizens and build for Albuquerque's residents the stronger, safer, and more secure communities that all Americans deserve," Attorney General Eric Holder said.

A Justice Department probe in April found that the force had violated the U.S. Constitution and demonstrated "patterns of excessive force." The findings came a month after police in Albuquerque were caught on camera killing a mentally ill homeless man, sparking protests.

The DOJ has opened more than 20 investigations into police departments across the country in the last five years, the AP reported. The feds have entered into 15 agreements to reform various law enforcement agencies.


—Elizabeth Chuck