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A different sort of “1 percenter”

Tuesday, Sep 11, 2018

* Some minds were changed about outlawing the death penalty and legalizing marijuana when skeptics were shown how much tax money could be saved (and gained, in the case of pot) by changing current laws. The fact that police misconduct lawsuits cost Chicago taxpayers $662 million between 2004 and 2016 has been attracting growing interest in a city that can’t afford those costs.

* With that in mind

A new study has determined that taking civilian complaints more seriously could substantially reduce the most serious cases of police misconduct and the costs to Chicago taxpayers from legal settlements.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports legal scholars from Northwestern University and the University of Chicago reviewed some 50,000 misconduct complaints filed against Chicago police officers between 2002 and 2014.

The scholars, Max Schanzenbach and Kyle Rozema, found most complaints don’t lead to lawsuits. They say “the worst 1 percent” of officers generate nearly five times the number of legal payouts than the average officer.

Yikes.

* The limitation on this theory is it won’t save a ton of money

The two concluded that “removing the worst 1 percent” of Chicago Police officers — about 120 people — and replacing them with “an average officer” would have saved Chicago taxpayers more than $6 million in payouts between 2009 and 2014.

So a million or so a year. The study is here.

Thoughts?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

25 Comments »
  1. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:13 am:

    Aren’t we always told how sacred collective bargaining is?

    Well collective bargaining contracts for union government government workers make it nearly impossible and incredibly expensive to fire bad apples.


  2. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:14 am:

    ===nearly impossible and incredibly expensive to fire bad apples===

    The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.


  3. - Montrose - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:20 am:

    SO, you get rid of folks that should not be cops, fewer people are hurt/killed/mistreated, and you save money. Seems a pretty compelling argument to me.


  4. - Liandro - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:25 am:

    The million a year is great, and needed. But wouldn’t there also be an improvement in the City’s public safety customer service? And a slight improvement in the CPD reputation and community good will? And, if that happens, the potential for a few more citizens willing to work with officers to make their neighborhoods–a key, proven ingredient in lowering crime in the most dangerous regions?

    If, if…even a little of the above happens, wouldn’t that improve the quality of life for those Chicago residents, and the morale of the CPD–potentially helping recruiting, etc, while simultaneously making the City a slightly safer place for everyone–officers and citizens alike?

    There is no silver bullet, so leaders should be jumping on every piece of the solution they find…especially if the solution comes in savings vs. increased costs!


  5. - Cheryl44 - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:40 am:

    The money saved is nothing compared to lives saved because we fire bad cops.


  6. - Tequila Mockingbird - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:42 am:

    Chicago has a long history of promoting and protecting personnel that are either politically connected or personally involved with the connected. The percentage of so called merit promotions is alarming.


  7. - Archpundit - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:44 am:

    ===The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.

    Amen—do the paperwork and it’s not that hard.


  8. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 11:53 am:

    120 people isn’t many. Some people have bad judgement in emotional situations and they shouldn’t be on the street. I’m sure there are still jobs in the police force they can do, provided these people aren’t criminals. They can sit behind the desk and take information on traffic accidents. They can repair police vehicle cameras, they can teach new recruits how to shoot, etc.


  9. - Three Dimensional Checkers - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:02 pm:

    I’m sure the exonerations, where someone was locked up for years and years, are the big cost drivers followed by the shootings. There is often some like Burge or Reynaldo Guevara behind the exonerations.


  10. - Robert the 1st - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:04 pm:

    =The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.=

    RNUG would disagree going by his post a couple months back on the topic.


  11. - Hieronymus - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:06 pm:

    ===The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.

    … and how. Up to a point. It’s often an upper management issue, or even an organizational one - failing to back up line supervisors who are trying to deal with a “problem”. An organization tends to protect itself from boat-rockers of all stripes.


  12. - Annonin' - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:07 pm:

    Gotta love the “cost effectiveness” argument for police brutality. Some might suggest it could help restoring community confidence in the police.
    In turn make gang membership less appealing.


  13. - Hieronymus - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:10 pm:

    Oops, left out that I was replying to Rich’s reply “The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.” to LP, to which I say, “… and how.”


  14. - Thomas Paine - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:12 pm:

    Offer them each $100,000 to go work somewhere else.


  15. - Last Bull Moose - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:13 pm:

    I managed to fire a state employee. There was learning curve on building solid evaluations. It is not easy. And it is not fast. Progressive discipline takes time.
    Speed is not essential in back office positions. Front line positions like DCFS caseworkers or police need faster procedures. There is no way to work around dangerous front line workers


  16. - City Zen - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:17 pm:

    ==The excuse of lazy, incompetent managers everywhere.==

    But the managers (sergeants) are a collective bargaining unit themselves: Unit 156

    “Sergeants are to prepare, oversee, and monitor the performance of Department Officers and employees and to evaluate the performance of subordinates…”

    So the managers closest to the action and accountable for performance are indeed union members.


  17. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:23 pm:

    ===But the managers (sergeants)===

    Stop. There are plenty of non-union managers over there.


  18. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:26 pm:

    Also, contract negotiations are coming up. That’ll be up to the mayor.


  19. - DuPage - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:31 pm:

    @- Thomas Paine - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:12 pm:

    ===Offer them each $100,000 to go work somewhere else.===

    Please don’t send them here.


  20. - deon the legend - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 12:52 pm:

    ==Offer them each $100,000 to go work somewhere else.==

    Probably take quite a bit more than that. With overtime they probably make that much or more now. Also with 20 years and age 50 they can retire with a more than nice pension. (well deserved I believe)

    Bottom line if you don’t correct the flaws in the system you’ll just replace these 120 with a new group of 120.


  21. - City Zen - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 1:15 pm:

    == Also with 20 years and age 50 they can retire with a more than nice pension.==

    Retired firefighters can’t run all those neighborhood bars on their own.


  22. - Leave a light on George - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 1:17 pm:

    Still remember the time I had an officer in the state system commit a serious policy violation - not a hanging offense but one that deserved several days off without pay. He fought it as was his right. When it got outside my Department and into Governor Rod’s CMS, discipline was reduced to a slap on the wrist and this written admonishment to the employee “the next time you intend to violate policy notify your supervisor ahead of time.”


  23. - Jocko - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 1:36 pm:

    In addition to police misconduct, let’s not forget the $2M settlement to prevent Rahm from testifying on Chicago’s code of silence.

    https://tinyurl.com/yb57mdop


  24. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 3:16 pm:

    “==Offer them each $100,000 to go work somewhere else.==” Because it Worked so well for the Catholic church? /s


  25. - The Way I See It - Tuesday, Sep 11, 18 @ 5:37 pm:

    The study only covered through 2014. Been quite a few 8 figure settlements the last few years.


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