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The Justice Department said the city had failed to follow through on a commitment to have a committee review actual police encounters.

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: KRISTYNA WENTZ-GRAFF / OPB - Police investigate the scene where an officer shot and killed one person during an alleged carjacking Dec. 6, 2021. The city of Portland has accused the U.S. Department of Justice of stating incorrect information and misinterpreting police programs while the two sides negotiate how to bring Portland back into compliance with a federal settlement agreement about policing.
The city of Portland has accused the U.S. Department of Justice of stating incorrect information and misinterpreting police programs while the two sides negotiate how to bring Portland back into compliance with a federal settlement agreement about police use of force.

City attorneys responded in July to the Justice Department's sixth periodic assessment with a line-by-line rebuttal of areas where the city claims the Justice Department is moving the goalposts or simply wrong. OPB obtained a copy of the rebuttal through a public records request.

"The city believed, until recently, that the parties were working under a common understanding of the requirements of the Settlement Agreement," the city's response to the DOJ says. "This year's Compliance Assessment Report, however, revealed numerous areas where a difference in the parties' understanding led to a DOJ finding of only 'partial compliance' with particular provisions."

The Justice Department declined to comment.

The rebuttal was delivered in a closed-door meeting on July 28, one day after the city and federal prosecutors were in court to update U.S. District Court Judge Michael Simon on the city's progress in implementing agreed-upon changes. Ahead of that court appearance, the city filed a more upbeat response to the Justice Department, focusing on areas where the city had been successful.

Oregon Public Broadcasting is a news partner of the Portland Tribune. Their complete story can be found here.


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