Professor Annelise Mennicke researches how systems respond to domestic violence and sexual assault. She spoke with Fusion News about how rollbacks of federal oversight of local law enforcement could effect the investigation and prosecution of sexual assaults.
by: Katie McDonough
"Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced in April that he had ordered a sweeping review of reform agreements reached with dozens of police departments, writing in a memo at the time that 'local control and local accountability' made for effective policing and it was “not the responsibility of the federal government to manage non-federal law enforcement agencies.
The message was clear enough: The Department of Justice would be pulling back from the the kinds of federal oversight of police departments conducted by the Obama administration to leave cops to look after themselves.
This was the case in multiple police departments investigated by the DOJ during the Obama administration. In New Orleans, the DOJ found a police force that 'systematically misclassified large numbers of possible sexual assaults, resulting in a sweeping failure to properly investigate many potential cases of rape, attempted rape, and other sex crimes.' A woman who reported her rape to the department was pressed by a cop on why she had walked home 'alone in the cold on a dark street at that time in the morning.'"