DOJ Pulls Back Police Consent Decrees for Sweeping Review

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has requested a comprehensive review of federal agreements with law-enforcement agencies across the U.S., including consent decrees implemented by the Obama administration with 14 police departments. The order was made public Monday and in it Sessions demanded that his staff look at whether specific law-enforcement programs gel with President Trump’s principles. The department is seeking a 90-day delay in a consent decree to reform Baltimore’s notoriously troubled police department. Baltimore had negotiated the agreement in the final days of the Obama administration, and Baltimore Mayor Catherine E. Pugh said Monday that the city would “strongly oppose any delay in moving forward” with the proposed overhauls. Some have argued that Sessions’s actions would interfere with the will of the city. “This has all been negotiated by the affected parties,” said Ray Kelly, the president of a citizen-advocacy group. “Now we have an outside entity telling us what’s best for our citizens and our community when he has no experience, no knowledge.”