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KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

When people face deportation at a court in Seattle or Tacoma, and they don’t have an attorney, the immigration judge will often drop a name: The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project.

The group’s legal staff provides free help filling out forms and translating documents – even if an attorney can’t take on the full case.


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KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

Seattle reached a major milestone in its police reform efforts Thursday.

A federal monitor has found the overall use of force in the Seattle Police Department is down.

Seattle officials say they will continue to reform the police department, despite the federal government's changing law enforcement priorities.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said this week that his office will review existing reforms to ensure they meet the Trump Administration's goals. Those include improving officer safety and morale. That widespread review could include Seattle, which has been under a federal consent decree for five years to improve its police department.

A pilot project coming to Washington aims to bring an end to modern-day "debtors prisons."

Past offenders can end up back in jail if they can't pay their legal fees and fines on time. The problem disproportionately affects people of color, according to the Department of Justice.

KUOW Photo/John Ryan

Texas oil company Tesoro and the purchaser of one of its refineries have agreed to spend $403 million to reduce air pollution at oil refineries in six western states under an agreement announced by the Justice Department on Monday.

An appeals court in Seattle heard arguments Thursday in a far-reaching immigration case. The central question is whether minors who face deportation should be appointed lawyers at the government's expense.


The U.S. has devoted billions of dollars to fighting terrorism overseas in the years since the Sept. 11 attacks.

The Justice Department is increasingly warning about the danger posed by radicals on American soil, and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder wants prosecutors and FBI agents to devote more attention to the threat.

Nearly two decades ago, after the Oklahoma City bombing killed 168 people, the Justice Department launched a group to fight domestic terrorism.

KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan slammed a lawsuit filed by more than a hundred Seattle police officers who filed a legal complaint against city and federal officials. The officers say a new policy that dictates how police can use force restricts their constitutional rights to protect themselves.

Three candidates remain in the running to become Seattle’s next police chief.

Search committee co-chair Ron Sims says the short list became shorter by one candidate after the committee gave the four original finalists a written exam, conducted reference and background checks, and did intensive site visits.

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KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

Marcie Sillman talks with Lisa Daugaard, co-chair of the Community Police Commission, about the discipline system for Seattle police officers.

Flickr Photo/Rusty Blazenhoff (CC BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks with Jenny Durkan, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington, about the state failing to pass medical pot regulations and what the federal government might do about it.

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Seattle’s ongoing effort to reform the police department seems to be shifting to a new phase, from policy to implementation. Seattle Mayor Ed Murray says 2014 will be “the year of training” for Seattle cops.

Wikimedia Commons/Joe Mabel

Beginning next year Seattle police officers will be required to carry at least one weapon such as pepper spray in addition to their service revolvers.

AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Civil rights attorneys in Seattle will get reports of all US Border Patrol traffic stops on the Olympic Peninsula for the next 18 months.

That’s one of the settlement terms announced Tuesday in a lawsuit that alleged agents racially profiled people they pulled over.

The Yakama Nation tribe and the US Justice Department have settled a lawsuit over access to tribal lands.

On February 15, 2011  federal agents raided a Yakama tribal cigarette manufacturer. The dispute over federal taxes in that case continues, but the raid prompted a lawsuit.

Courtesy Lincoln Beauregard and Lee Rousso.

Attorneys for a man convicted of stealing a car in South Seattle two years ago have filed suit against the Seattle Police Department and one of its officers.

PRNewsFoto/Sikh Coalition

It’s a story you may have heard before: A drunk guy gets in a cab. His driver has dark skin, a beard and a turban. The passenger calls the driver racial names and beats him so viciously, the driver lands in the hospital and the passenger goes to jail.

U.S. Attorney's Office

A Seattle man received an 18-year prison sentence on terrorism charges on Monday after plotting to attack a military installation in South Seattle.

Two Seattle police unions have filed a lawsuit against a federal plan to reform the police department.

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KUOW Photo/Ashley Ahearn

As part of the agreement with the Department of Justice to implement reforms in the Seattle Police Department, Mayor Mike McGinn proposed the creation of a Community Police Commission. The 13-member commission, selected by the mayor and City Council,  is supposed to ensure that the police are acting lawfully and safely.

The commission still has to be confirmed by the City Council, but Ross Reynolds sits down with commission co-chair and deputy director of the Defender Association, Lisa Daugaard, to discuss what the commission can and hopes to accomplish.

Sean Whitcomb
Amy Radil

The Seattle Police Department is facing another use-of-force lawsuit accompanied by video footage. Friday the department defended its conduct at a press conference.

Seattle Police cars
Flickr Photo/ Eric Peacock (CC-BY-NC-ND)

We talk with Merrick Bobb, Seattle's new federally appointed independent police monitor. He began working in the field of police accountability 20 years ago, following the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles. In Seattle, he'll help implement an overhaul of the SPD’s use-of-force procedures and establish guidelines for citizen contacts and stops.

Seattle police patrol cars.
Flickr Photo/Brittney Bollay (CC BY-NC-ND)

Kathryn Olson, outgoing head of the Seattle Police Office of Professional Accountability, talks with Ross Reynolds about the Department of Justice finding that police engage in use of excessive force, what the city and DOJ are doing to remedy the problems, and her role as the director of the OPA.

Seattle police patrol cars.
Flickr Photo/Brittney Bollay

A federal judge has appointed Merrick Bobb as the independent monitor to oversee reforms to the Seattle Police Department. Bobb’s appointment follows disagreement between the Seattle city council, the police department,  and the mayor over whether he was the best choice.

Bobb was one of four finalists. As monitor he will assess the City’s compliance with a settlement agreement between the police and the U.S. Department of Justice.

The city of Seattle is seeking citizens for its new Community Police Commission. The commission is being established as part of an agreement with the U.S. Justice Department to reform the Seattle Police Department. Federal and local officials have expressed hopes that the commission will play a strong role in police oversight. But it faces some limitations that could hamper its abilities, as the members of another police review board have already found.