Feds launch investigation of NJ police department headed by new Chicago police superintendent

May 9, 2011

The Associated Press

Federal authorities are investigating the police department of New Jersey's largest city, months after the state American Civil Liberties Union complained of rampant misconduct and lax internal oversight. Last week, Newark police chief Garry McCarthy was chosen by Rahm Emanuel to be Chicago's police superintendent.

The Department of Justice announced Monday that they have opened an investigation of the Newark Police Department.

U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman says the probe will look into allegations of excessive force, discriminatory policing and poor treatment of detainees in holding cells. They will also investigate whether officers retaliate against those who legally observe, or record, police activity.

The assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division says the department did a preliminary investigation before deciding to launch a formal probe.

In a 96-page filing to the Department of Justice in September, the ACLU called for federal oversight of the city's 1,300-officer department.