BALTIMORE – The City of Baltimore paid more than $11 million in court judgments, settlements and legal fees in police brutality and civil rights cases in the past four years, reveals an investigation by The Baltimore Sun.

The report says that since 2011, more than 100 people have won court judgments or settlements related to charges of police brutality or civil rights violations.

Baltimore has paid $5.7 million in these settlements and another $5.8 million in legal fees. The Sun says one hidden cost is, “The perception that officers are violent can poison the relationship between residents and police.”

The sixth-month investigation tells not only the financial toll, but the physical and emotional toll those cases have taken on the people involved.

A spokesperson for Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake reacted to the report Monday, saying the mayor was aware of the court settlements and fees because that is public information.

The spokesperson added that Rawlings-Blake has been working to improve the problem of police brutality, but did not say how she is doing so.

The mayor’s office says a federal investigation is unnecessary.

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WNEW’s Sarah Jacobs contributed to this report. Follow her and WNEW on Twitter.


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