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Committee to create 4 spots for officer-involved probes

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Legislature’s budget-writing committee plans to give the state Justice Department more positions to handle officer-involved death investigations.

A new law that went into effect last year requires outside agencies to probe officer-involved deaths. DOJ officials say theirs has become the go-to agency for local police who now need outside investigators. A Legislative Fiscal Bureau report shows DOJ has investigated 12 deaths since the law took effect in April 2014. That’s up 71 percent from seven death investigations in 2013.

The agency has asked the Joint Finance Committee for five additional positions to handle such probes.

The committee is set to consider the request Thursday. The panel’s co-chairs said they plan to give the agency four positions funded through criminal surcharges.

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