The Ferguson police department denied Thursday any knowledge of a potential lawsuit from the U.S. Department of Justice. It did say, however, that “many improvements and changes” had been underway in the police force ever since unrest broke out in the city.
CNN broke the news late Wednesday night that the Justice Department could be suing the Ferguson police department for a pattern of racial bias unless the police underwent reform.
Last November, the St. Louis grand jury chose not to indict Darren Wilson, a white police officer for the shooting death in Ferguson of 18-year-old unarmed black man Michael Brown. Ferguson had seen months of turmoil over Brown’s death, which inflamed following the grand jury decision.
Jeff Small, a Ferguson Police spokesman, discredited CNN’s claims.
“It’s not coming from any official source so far as we know,” he said. “We’re in a wait and see pattern.”
Media have been calling in, said Small, since Thursday morning, asking about the lawsuit. He approved of the outlets who chose not to pursue the story, he said, “because they’d be relying on a story coming from CNN, which is not in any way official, nor in any way suggesting that it is factual.”
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is expected to release the findings of the investigation in his final weeks of office.
Still, Small said, his department had one assurance.
“Whether or not the investigations says we were doing anything great, or we were doing things horribly wrong, we’ve still taken it upon ourselves to make many improvements,” which would be released soon, he said.