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Cleveland Police Monitor Approves City's Plan For Equipping Police

Over the next few years, the Cleveland Division of Police will see tens of millions of dollars in technology upgrades (and maybe a new headquarters). [Matt Richmond / ideastream]
photo of Cleveland police headquarters

The monitor evaluating Cleveland’s progress on the federal consent decree has approved the city’s plan for upgrading the police department’s antiquated equipment, meaning the days of returning to the station to file reports could soon be over.

In rejecting Cleveland’s first plan, submitted in 2016, the monitor described the Cleveland Division of Police as “several decades behind” where it should be when it comes to technology.

According to the monitor, police cars were in need of replacement. Officers lacked access to computers and an IT system, making it impossible to track their work and file reports from the field.

In its new plan, the city will invest $27.4 million dollars over the next five years on new IT equipment, including a system that tracks vehicle stops. It’s also committed to buying dozens of new squad cars each year.

Since the consent decree was signed in 2015, the city has adopted new policies covering bias free policing, use of force, and crisis intervention.

Matthew Richmond is a reporter/producer focused on criminal justice issues at Ideastream Public Media.