Consent Decrees Are Like Stepping ‘Into A Bucket of Concrete’

The highlights of this article by The New York Times reveals some concerning issues with consent decrees and cites specific problems that arose out of the Baltimore consent decree.

Here are some highlights of the article and you can read it in full here


“Critics and proponents alike acknowledge that consent decrees can be onerous. They can include hundreds of requirements, cost cities millions of dollars and last so long that residents forget what success was supposed to look like.”

“When you lay out this massive consent decree, honestly, it’s like the department just stepped into a bucket of concrete.”

“The Justice Department wanted rules for officers that went further than the Constitution required, without regard for whether they hampered the ability to stop crime. “I can tell you from being at the table, there was no interest in having conversations around what the impact might be from some of these policies.” 

“Experience running a department with a consent decree has become a plum line on a chief’s résumé.”