Wisconsin Law Would Mandate Outside Investigations for Officer-Involved Deaths
April 21, 2014
A Wisconson state law could soon go into effect that would require outside agencies to investigate officer-involved deaths, reports the Associated Press. Supporters of the law say that it will assure the public that the police are not protecting their own when investigating deadly force incidents. The bill passed the Legislature earlier this year and Gov. Scott Walker has signaled he will sign it into law soon.
The bill would allow agencies to conduct internal investigations but they would also have to launch a criminal investigation involving at least two outside investigators.
Most smaller Wisconsin departments already rely on outside investigators because they lack manpower and want to avoid the appearance they’re covering up for their own.
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LCCxx @ 4/22/2014 9:42 AM
As a retired LEO, I can say that this sounds good on face value, but in the end it will have problems. Politics aside, issues will always result to cost. In-depth OIS often cost a great deal of money. Often times there's a lack of agencies willing to enter into a contract to conduct these types of investigations. Remember, these types of investigations involve forensics, testing, grand jury presentations, etc. I'm not sure about the specifics regarding the state of Wisconsin (if they have a State Police), but cost and jurisdiction are obstacles.
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