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Costs of Police Misconduct Rise

The costs of police misconduct have risen over the last several years, according to a study by The Wall Street Journal. From 2010 to 2014, the 10 cities with the largest police departments collectively paid out $1.02 billion for police misconduct, which included alleged beatings, shootings, deaths and wrongful imprisonment. In 2014, these departments paid $248.7 million to settle police misconduct cases, up 48% from $168.3 million in 2010.

Combined, New York and Los Angeles paid out $10.7 million for police misconduct cases last year alone. Both cities now monitor police misconduct claims more closely as part of an effort to try new approaches to managing risk.

Video footage has played a role in at least some of the alleged police misconduct cases. A lawyer for Franics Pusok, a California man who was filmed being beaten by sheriff’s deputies after allegedly stealing a horse, said the San Bernardino sheriff’s department wanted the issue to go away quickly. In other cases, it is uncertain whether charges would even have brought against the officers involved without the video footage.

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