The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of Indiana has created the first Indiana-based initiative in the district to increase and improve local efforts in protecting residents’ civil rights.
The Civil Rights Task Force, announced by U.S. Attorney Joseph Hogsett Monday, is a change from how civil rights matters are traditionally handled. The Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., with assistance from local attorneys in the U.S. Attorney’s Office, typically handles those cases.
This change in strategy means the U.S. Attorney’s Office is taking a more proactive role in litigating, investigating and prosecuting civil rights matters. The task force will partner with law enforcement and local advocacy groups and meet regularly to coordinate investigations in allegations of criminal or civil violations, as well as build good will in the community.
As part of the initiative, the office created a new federal civil rights complaint form, which is available at http://www.justice.gov/usao/ins/.
Assistant U.S. attorneys from the criminal and civil divisions within the office will head the group.