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The wages of power with impunity, continued

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This is a very depressing (and superbly reported) story I wish I could say was surprising:

They served in police departments big and small. They were new recruits and seasoned veterans, patrol officers and chiefs of police. They understood the power of their guns and badges. In many cases, they used that very power to find and silence their victims.

A Washington Post investigation has found that over the past two decades, hundreds of law enforcement officers in the United States have sexually abused children while officials at every level of the criminal justice system have failed to protect kids, punish abusers and prevent additional crimes.

Police and sheriff’s departments have enabled predators by botching background checks, ignoring red flags and mishandling investigations. Accused cops have used their knowledge of the legal system to stall cases, get charges lowered or evade convictions. Prosecutors have given generous plea deals to officers who admitted to raping and groping minors. Judges have allowed many convicted officers to avoid prison time.

The United States has had considerably more success in maintaining civilian control over the military than over local and state police.

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