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Widely debated cases help spark federal Phoenix police probe

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Posted at 6:15 PM, Aug 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-06 21:15:34-04

PHOENIX (AP) — The attorney for the family of a homeless Black Muslim man who died while being restrained by officers says his case may have helped prompt the U.S. Justice Department this week to launch a widespread civil rights probe into the Phoenix police force.

The Justice Department said Thursday it would scrutinize whether officers have used excessive force, abused the disabled and people experiencing homelessness, engaged in discriminatory policing practices and retaliated against people for activities protected by the First Amendment.

Criminal justice experts say such investigations can be useful but are limited in what they can do.