Chicago hires former US attorney to review law department

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Dan Webb. (E. Jason Wambsgans / Chicago Tribune)

CHICAGO — The head of Chicago’s law department says a former U.S. attorney will conduct an independent review of the division that defends Chicago police after a judge last week accused a city attorney of hiding evidence in a lawsuit over a fatal police shooting.

Corporation Counsel Steve Patton said in a news release Sunday that the department has hired Dan Webb to review “practices and standards” of the Federal Civil Rights Litigation division. It represents Chicago and its officers in federal civil cases, including claims of excessive force.

Patton says the department also will provide “enhanced ethics training” to lawyers and paralegals.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called for an outside review Thursday, after initially saying it wasn’t necessary to include the law department in a Justice Department investigation of Chicago police.