US: 2 Louisiana localities agree to stop illegal arrests
LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - The U.S. Justice Department says it's reached agreements with two local governments in Louisiana to end a practice of unconstitutionally arresting and holding people wanted for questioning in criminal cases.
Monday's announcement comes weeks after the settlement of two class-action lawsuits filed on behalf of victims of the practice in the city of Ville Platte and in surrounding Evangeline Parish, about 80 miles west of Baton Rouge. Settlement terms weren't disclosed.
The Justice Department said in a 2016 report that hundreds were illegally arrested without probable cause over the years. It said some people were strip-searched and detained for days.
The city and the parish agreed to better training and supervise officers to make sure the practice doesn't resume - and to collect better data on arrests.
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