The Financial Burden of Police Misconduct

Arturo Dominguez
The Antagonist Magazine

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The broad implications of police misconduct include a staggering financial burden

Demonstrator at a George Floyd protest holding up a Defund the Police sign on June 5, 2020 — Image by Taymaz Valley via Creative Commons license CC BY 2.0

The outlay of police misconduct is often measured in human costs. Whether it’s a loss of life, lasting trauma as a victim or a victim’s family, or the harm it does to entire communities. What is rarely openly discussed are the financial burdens of police misconduct on society. Since human costs don’t appeal to people, perhaps the financial costs will. You know, since some Americans are so concerned with the costs of things like social programs and a few broken windows.

Let me be clear about something, I’m not here to debate rioting, looting, or burning buildings despite who’s been behind most of it. But you can’t talk about the cost of peaceful protests or rioting provoked by police misconduct without talking about the cost of that police misconduct. With much of local law enforcement’s funding coming from the federal level, every time a city pays out for a police misconduct suit, it costs every American.

On the local level and aside from taxpayer dollars, many cities cover the costs of reckless policing in creative ways. Larger cities in particular will issue bonds to cover the costs of police misconduct cases. Issuing bonds proved crucial for the city of Chicago, a city plagued with police violence and countless lawsuits for police…

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Arturo Dominguez
The Antagonist Magazine

Journalist covering Congress, Racial Justice, Human Rights, Cuba, Texas | Editor: The Antagonist Magazine |