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Hold bad cops accountable by striking down qualified immunity | READER COMMENTARY

When seven officers from the Gun Trace Task Force were arrested in 2017, the sprawling case was shocking. Plain clothes officers targeted people, stole hundreds of thousands of dollars, lied about overtime and also conducted searches without warrants. Prosecutors said Sgt. Wayne Jenkins was the ring leader of the rogue squad.
When seven officers from the Gun Trace Task Force were arrested in 2017, the sprawling case was shocking. Plain clothes officers targeted people, stole hundreds of thousands of dollars, lied about overtime and also conducted searches without warrants. Prosecutors said Sgt. Wayne Jenkins was the ring leader of the rogue squad. (Kevin Richardson / Baltimore Sun)

So many members of our law enforcement agencies help provide the protection our communities need. However, the few cops that abuse their power or enforce the law without care or empathy have poisoned the well against cops for myself and many others across the country (“Baltimore expected to pay $8 million to settle Gun Trace Task Force lawsuit, eclipsing amount in Freddie Gray case,” Nov. 13). There are ways to restore trust in our law enforcement including one reform that would close the legal loophole of qualified immunity.

Qualified immunity reform is fancy language that really just means this: Allow those who are victims of police brutality and even fatal excessive force to sue the bad cops that brutalized them or their family members. It is a simple way to protect officers who do right by our communities every single day and to weed out the bad officers who perpetrate violence. I want to trust law enforcement again. I want to hold bad cops accountable and keep the good ones safe. I believe that ending qualified immunity will provide the accountability we need to move forward.

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James Brady, Cambridge

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