Federal police monitor: Miami ‘committed’ to Justice agreement

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article128515899.html

 

BY DAVID SMILEY

 

In her first report as monitor of Miami’s federal policing agreement, former Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor declines to measure the progress the city’s 1,300-member police force has made under benchmarks set forth by the U.S. Department of Justice, but says the department is taking seriously its obligations under the compact.

“While it is too early in the review and assessment process to accurately measure many of the stated improvements, it is apparent that the [police department] understands the significance and obligations of the agreement,” Castor wrote. “In addition, the [department] appears fully engaged and committed to the successful implementation of the agreement in an effort to better serve the citizens of Miami.”

Castor’s report, however limited, offers the first outside take on Miami’s response to the agreement, approved nearly one year ago. The agreement, released late Monday to the Miami Herald by the city in response to a Jan. 12 records request, was crafted after federal investigators said a review of dozens of shootings between 2008 and 2011 showed the department had a practice of excessive force when it came to pulling the trigger.

Castor’s report did not include assessments on whether the department is meeting requirements under the agreement related to training, procedures, investigations and supervision, saying her first report was dedicated to understanding the department’s policies and operations. The report was due in July, but was delayed in part because of a contract dispute.