Friday, February 10, 2006

Forceful Story

A fight between off-duty cops and two men carrying a bag of steak fajitas prompted the San Francisco Chronicle to investigate the use of excessive force by members of the city's police department. To report "The Use of Force," Susan Sward, Bill Wallace and Elizabeth Fernandez used public records to create an electronic database that showed a core group of fewer than 100 violence-prone officers -- out of 2,200 in the department -- were involved in many of the use-of-force incidents. Even more disturbing, Sward, Wallace and Fernandez found that the department hasn't developed an effective system for identifying problem officers, instead promoting them or using them to train other officers. In addition to their database reporting, the Chronicle team conducted 155 interviews to show how problem officers affect the city's residents.
I got information about this story from Investigative Reporters and Editors.


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