The most important statement in the Justice Department’s damning report on the Chicago Police Department has nothing to do with police behavior.
Released on Friday, the report found the Chicago police guilty of a “pattern or practice” of unconstitutional force.
But it turns out that the Justice Department has no standard for what constitutes a “pattern or practice” (the phrase comes from a 1994 federal statute) of unconstitutional police conduct.
“Statistical evidence is not required” for a “pattern or practice” finding, the DOJ lawyers announce, citing unrelated court precedent.
Nor is there “a specific number of incidents” required to constitute a “pattern or practice,” they proclaim.
You might say the AG Lynch report is a DOJ lynching.