DOJ opens investigation of Seattle police after Native man's death

The Department of Justice has opened a preliminary investigation of the police department in Seattle, Washington, in response to a series of high-profile incidents, including the fatal shooting of John T. Williams, a traditional woodcarver.

U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan has met with law enforcement officials and community groups that pushed for the investigation. The probe will be handled by DOJ's Civil Rights Division.

Williams, who was a member of the Dididaht First Nation of British Columbia, was fatally shot by an officer on August 30, 2010. An inquest returned a mixed verdict but half of the jurors said Williams did not pose a threat at the time of the shooting.

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Justice Department begins preliminary review of Seattle police (The Seattle Times 1/25)

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