Justice Department sends Ferguson warning on consent decree

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ST. LOUIS (AP) _ The Justice Department says it will drop a lawsuit against Ferguson if the City Council approves a proposed agreement to reform its police department and court.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/1TBPhd9 ) obtained a copy of a letter sent Friday to Ferguson’s mayor. In it, the head of the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division says the federal government is prepared to continue with the lawsuit if the St. Louis suburb doesn’t approve the deal in its original form.

The City Council voted last month to accept the consent decree negotiated with the DOJ over 26 weeks last year, but only if itincluded seven amendments.

The letter also rejects the notion that a provision requiring Ferguson to offer police competitive salaries means they and all city workers get 25 percent raises.