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Susette M. Talarico Lecture
The Criminal Justice Studies Program and the Criminal Justice Society invite you to the
2023 Susette M. Talarico Lecture
“American Police Reform, Act 2: Where Progress Stalls”
Veteran Journalist, Author & Teacher
Wednesday, March 22, 2023
2:00 – 3:00 PM
UGA Law School
Larry Walker Room
Modern American police reform, Act 1: Los Angeles police beat Rodney King into submission at a darkened intersection on March 3, 1991. A state trial, acquittals, a riot, a federal trial and civil rights convictions follow. From that tumult emerges a new model for keeping the peace, one built on community policing, problem-solving, officer tracking and civilian oversight. Police Reform, Act 2: By the 2010s, some of the urgency of the early 1990s has faded, and many police departments, enamored with the chance to buy military hardware, abandon community engagement and embrace armed control. Accelerating that trend, Donald Trump and his first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, withdraw the Department of Justice’s support for pattern-and-practice litigation. The results: scandal and violence, mostly in small and medium-sized police departments, including St. Louis, Seattle, Baltimore, New Orleans and others. Crime rises, George Floyd is murdered. The nation recoils. What, then, for Act 3?
Jim Newton is a veteran journalist, author and teacher. He spent 25 years at the Los Angeles Times, where he covered the LAPD and the city’s struggle to recover from the beating of Rodney G. King and the riots that erupted the following year. He has written about policing and police reform for more than 30 years. He teaches at UCLA, where he founded and edits Blueprint magazine. Newton is the recipient of numerous national and local awards in journalism and while at the LA Times participated in two staff efforts that were awarded the Pulitzer Prize.
The 2023 Talarico Lecture is supported by the Susette M. Talarico Fund, the Criminal Justice Society, the Department of Political Science, and the Department of Journalism.