Seattle was on the cusp of finally ending federal oversight of its police department when an outside arbitrator demanded that the city rehire an officer who had punched a handcuffed woman in the eye.

The arbitrator’s ruling was so upsetting to a federal judge that he saw fit to play the video of the incident — in which officer Adley Shepherd is seen leveling the woman in the back of his patrol car — to a captive audience in his usually staid courtroom.

When the tape finished playing, the judge, James Robart, concluded that the city police department would remain under federal supervision until it fixed what had gone wrong with the Shepherd case.

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