Initial hearing set in major Chicago police reforms lawsuit

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CHICAGO (AP) _ An initial hearing is scheduled in a major lawsuit that seeks to force Chicago into implementing police reforms under close court supervision.

Wednesday’s hearing in Chicago is the first since Black Lives Matter and other community groups filed the class-action suit against the city last week.

The hearing could offer some indications about whether Chicago will fight the civil case or cooperate with the groups. Judge John Z. Lee could also begin setting timetables for motions and the production of evidence.

The federal lawsuit is a response to a recent draft deal on police reforms between Chicago and the Justice Department that doesn’t include court oversight. Many reform advocates say such court participation is vital.

A January Justice Department report on Chicago police abuses prompted a city pledge to reform.