I thought black on black crime in Chicago was the problem not the cops http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...cago-police-has-been-plagued-racism/82996318/ CHICAGO — The city’s police department is beset by racism and needs sweeping reforms to help it win back trust in the community, according to a report released Wednesday by a panel tasked by Mayor Rahm Emanuel. The Chicago Police Accountability Task Force called on the department to "acknowledge its racist history and overhaul its handling of excessive force allegations." The report contains over 100 recommendations for reform and is replete with statistics that suggest African-Americans in the city are disproportionately targeted by Chicago officers. The task force found 74% of people killed or injured by Chicago police officers over the last eight years were African-American. In 2014, 72% of people stopped by Chicago police were black and 17% were Hispanic, according to the report. About 76% of the time that a taser was deployed between 2012 and 2015, it was used on a black suspect, the task force found. About 33% of the city's population is black. The data, the task force asserts, "gives validity to the widely held belief the police have no regard for the sanctity of life when it comes to people of color." "Some people do not feel safe in any encounter with the police," the report said. "Some do not feel like they have the ability to walk in their neighborhoods or drive in their cars without being aggressively confronted by the police. The consistent theme of these deeply held beliefs came from a significant cross-section of people: men and women, young, middle-aged and older, doctors, lawyers, teachers and other professionals, students, and everyday workers." The report was released on the same day the city council voted to make Eddie Johnson, an African-American and 27-year veteran of the department, Chicago's top cop. Johnson was installed by Emanuel as interim superintendent last month after the mayor rejected recommendations for the position by the Chicago Police Board, which considered 39 applicants. Johnson was not among those who initially applied for the position, but now holds the position on a more permanent basis. Emanuel created the task force in the aftermath of the court-ordered release of police video in November that showed a white police officer pumping 16 shots into 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, who was black, on a city street. The McDonald video triggered the firing of police superintendent Garry McCarthy, contributed to last month's primary defeat of Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez, and diminished the mayor's standing with the city's voters. In addition, the Justice Department in December launched a civil rights investigation of the police department. The officer involved in the shooting, Jason Van Dyke, was charged with first-degree murder on the same day of the video's release and awaits trial. “Overall, we found that good police are not supported or rewarded, while too many bad police are given a pass. Red flags about officers heading down the wrong path are not quickly and aggressively addressed, as they should be. And officers can go from the training academy to retirement with virtually no mandatory training in between,” said Task Force chairwoman Lori Lightfoot. “The department needs to invest in its human capital and professionalize the way it manages its people.” The recommendations made by the panel are numerous. The task force said the city should require all disciplinary information be provided online so citizens can track complaints and discipline histories of police officers, work to dismantle the institutionalization of the police “code of silence” and replace the agency that is currently tasked with investigating major police misconduct with a new organization that holds more power. The city's Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) has come under an avalanche of criticism from activists and some African-American politicians for being toothless. The agency has reviewed more than 400 police-involved shootings since 2008, but has found wrongdoing by cops in only two cases. The task force says IPRA should be replaced with a Civilian Police Investigative Agency, "which will enhance structural protections, powers and resources for investigating serious cases of police misconduct, even in the absence of sworn complaints." The panel concluded the city has reached a "painful but necessary reckoning" and that a "culture of accountability" was lacking on the police force. "The City and in particular CPD would do well to embrace the necessary changes to address the systemic problems in CPD and not simply hope that this storm will pass," the report says. "It will not, and ignoring this opportunity will exacerbate an already volatile set of circumstances." Emanuel told reporters he was not surprised the task force homed in on the problem of racism in the department. "The question is, what are we doing to do to confront it and make the changes in not only personnel, but in polices to reflect ... the values that make up the diversity of our city," he said.