If the department does not enact changes to improve itself, the Justice Department will sue the Ferguson Police Department for "a pattern of racially discriminatory tactics," CNN reports. Unnamed sources told the news organization that the Justice Department is preparing a case against the police department, but Attorney General Eric Holder will announce the results of the investigation this week, he said. Although it seems unlikely that the DOJ will sue Officer Darren Wilson himself for killing Michael Brown, CNN reports, it's almost positive that the federal department will provide a list of findings the Ferguson Police Department must address. If the police department refuses to take a look at its strategy or change its tactics, that's when the DOJ would sue.
The federal department began investigating the Ferguson Police Department soon after Brown's death. In September, Holder said that the investigation would look at the police department's use of force, including deadly force, as well as analyze stops, searches and arrests, and examine the treatment of people detained at the city's jail. The DOJ also investigated the actual case of Michael Brown's death, as well as whether to bring charges against Wilson, but in January, The New York Times reported the DOJ was not expected to bring civil rights charges against Wilson. Regarding the investigation into the police department, Holder said at the National Press Club on Tuesday:
I think everybody will see when we announce our results that the process that we have engaged in is, as I said back at the time when I went to Ferguson, independent, thorough and based on all the facts. And I am confident that people will be satisfied with the results that will be announced.
Holder wrote an op-ed in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in August that gave specifics of how the federal department would investigate the case. He addressed the protests and called for peace, trust, and justice, ending the column by saying:
Our investigation into this matter will be full, it will be fair, and it will be independent. And beyond the investigation itself, we will work with the police, civil rights leaders, and members of the public to ensure that this tragedy can give rise to new understanding — and robust action — aimed at bridging persistent gaps between law enforcement officials and the communities we serve. Long after the events of Aug. 9 have receded from the headlines, the Justice Department will continue to stand with this community.