Police departments have come under increased scrutiny from the Obama administration as the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division steps up investigations of corruption, bias and excessive force.
Some of the targeted law enforcement agencies have had ethical clouds hanging over them for years — the New Orleans Police Department being the prime example — but others, like the Seattle Police Department, aren't exactly usual suspects.
The chief prosecutor for the military commissions at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is arguing a difficult case: that the commissions are not only fair, but can take pride of place alongside the civilian criminal justice system.
Brig. Gen. Mark Martins is the chief prosecutor for the commissions, the courts at the naval base that try high-profile terrorism suspects.
He has been called Guantanamo's detox man largely because he has made it his mission to show that the military commissions system at Guantanamo is no longer a toxic version of victor's justice.
A special prosecutor who spent two years exploring Justice Department misconduct in the botched case against late Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) said "contest living" — the desire to win a big case — explained the failure to follow the rules in one of the biggest political corruption prosecutions in decades.
"[Lawyers] do not want to have to undermine our case if it can possibly be avoided," investigator Hank Schuelke told the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday. "That motive to win the case was the principal operative motive."
The parents of slain Florida teenager Trayvon Martin have been in Washington, D.C., the past two days, meeting with Democratic lawmakers and pleading for the arrest of George Zimmerman, the Sanford, Fla., neighborhood watch volunteer who shot their son.
I talked today with the boy's father, Tracy Martin, 45, about the whirlwind of attention the case has drawn, the latest claims made about his son's role in the Feb. 26 incident in Sanford and his hopes for an arrest.