Remember Ferguson? The St Louis suburb, Missouri, was the scene of some of the worst race-related unrest in the US since the 1992 Los Angeles riots.
Demonstrations were sparked by the August 9 death of black teenager Michael Brown, who was shot six times by Ferguson officer Darren Wilson, who remains under investigation.
According to the Washington Post, six other Ferguson officers - five current and one former - have been named in civil rights lawsuits alleging the use of excessive force.
That means 13 per cent of the 53-strong department has faced such investigations, compared to a national average of around 0.5 per cent of all police officers, as calculated by the Cato Institute's National Police Misconduct Statistics and Reporting Project.
Ferguson police officers have fought a variety of allegations, including:
- Killing a mentally ill man with a Taser
- Pistol-whipping a child
- Choking and hogtying a child
- Beating a man later charged with destroying city property because his blood got on to officers' clothes
The cases themselves are fairly extraordinary - so is the volume. It's prima facie evidence of discriminatory practices. I would be surprised if [the Justice Department] didn't make a recommendation that they be placed under scrutiny.
- Clarence Harmon, former St Louis Mayor and city police chief