Consent Decree Could Cripple Staffing In Phoenix

Phoenix – New numbers show an uptick in recruits for the Phoenix Police Department for the first time in four years. The department is still short several hundred officers, and the police union fears the looming Department of Justice Investigation could halt the recruitment and retention progress.

But Phoenix Law Enforcement Association President Darrell Kriplean worries the current DOJ investigation could slow down the positive momentum. For the last two years, the DOJ has been looking into whether there’s a pattern of unconstitutional policing in Phoenix. “Forty-two percent of members said they would strongly consider or will retire or resign if a decree is implemented,” said Kriplean.

He’s referring to a consent decree, which is a mandatory to-do list from the DOJ that would require a major overhaul of the police department. Kriplean said the cost and paperwork of a consent decree would be crippling. “While there is an uptick in recruitment, I think that would definitely end if we were to agree to a consent decree,” said Kriplean.