Feds Probe Excessive Force by Seattle Officers

SEATTLE --

The U.S. Attorney's Office confirmed on Monday that the Justice Department has begun a preliminary review of the Seattle Police Department.

The review stems from a string of cases that centered on the use of force by Seattle police, especially against minority suspects.

The cases include the infamous "stomping" video that KIRO's Team 7 Investigators first revealed last year, which shows an officer stomping on a Latino man who was face-down on the ground, and the deadly shooting of Native American woodcarver John T. Williams in August.

The Washington state office of the American Civil Liberties Union and 34 other groups called for the federal investigation.

The Attorney's Office said that so far, discussions have centered only on the scope of the federal investigation.

King County prosecutors and the Seattle city attorney declined to pursue charges against the officers in the video.

An inquest into Williams' shooting wrapped up last week; prosecutors said they expected to reach a decision on whether to press charges by mid-February.

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