The U.S. Justice Department has launched a wide-ranging investigation that will look at whether Louisville Metro Police engaged in a pattern of abuse.

The probe will determine if the agency engages in a pattern of "violations of the Constitution or federal law," Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference. He did not say whether the investigation was prompted by Breonna Taylor's death, but he did acknowledge the city's record $12 million settlement reached with her family, the Courier-Journal reports.

Federal investigators will examine if the department: 

  • Used unreasonable force, including during peaceful protests; 
  • Engaged in unconstitutional stops, searches and seizures, including unlawful search warrant executions on private residences; 
  • Discriminated against people based on race; and
  • Failed to provide public services in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Garland said the probe also would include a comprehensive review of LMPD's policies and training, along with an assessment of the effectiveness of its supervision of officers.

"We will follow the facts and the law wherever they lead," he said. "If violations are found, the Justice Department will aim to work with the city and police department to arrive at a set of mutually agreeable steps that they can take to correct and prevent unlawful patterns or practices."

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