This according to a spokesman for the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA), which a city audit found is writing off cases of potential misconduct by Chicago cops before they are investigated thanks to a lack of the affadavits that state law demands must accompany complaints. And even as avenues exist for complaints to proceed absent a sworn statement. Representatives from the office for citizen oversight of how the city is policed say efforts have been made to shore up operations since its 2016 charter.
The 62-page report from the city’s Office of Inspector General (IG) reviewed more than 8,000 complaints made in 2017 and 2018, less than one-fifth of which were investigated. The report found that 60 percent of the 3600 cases the COPA deemed worthy of following up were tossed for lack of an affidavit. The IG faulted COPA for failing to use “objective and verifiable evidence” to override the required signature as allowed by law, including medical records, bodycam footage and police reports, in cases of domestic abuse and excessive force. Officials pointed to recent rises in rates of full investigations as evidence “COPA has matured significantly as an organization during the past two years.”
Mistreatement by police during an arrest or interrogation can lead to the dismissal of charges. If you believe cops have violated your civil rights, the DuPage County Criminal Defense Attorneys at The Chicagoland Law Firm can help make the law work for you. Our Cook County Defense Lawyers are expert at creating and implementing the strategies that enable our clients to achieve the best outcomes possible given the facts in their case. To discuss the facts in your case, contact our office to arrange a free consultation. We can’t provide legal advice until you retain us. When you do, we will put our knowledgeable team of professionals to work on your case. We are your best defense.