Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed over a dozen police reforms into law, including mandated anti-racism training for law enforcement and a ban on no-knock warrants.
Senate Bill 5030, which was passed Wednesday, “creates statewide minimum training standards” on “awareness of racism” and “biased profiling,” according to a statement from the governor’s office. The ordinance makes the Commonwealth the third state in the nation to ban no-knock raids, and the legislation also forbids local departments from acquiring “grenades, weaponized aircraft and high caliber rifles” in an effort to demilitarize, Northam’s team wrote. Read More
Following Walter Wallace Jr.’s death, Gideon’s Army posted a picture that read “WALTER WALLACE: REST IN POWER.” Wallace reportedly was shot while charging at police with a knife, due to a psychotic episode. Following Wallace’s death, riots broke out in Philadelphia and across the nation. Read More
Gideon’s Army is an organization that seeks to eliminate modern police systems entirely and replace them with “violence interrupters” and “trauma officers.” According to their site, these officials would provide conflict resolution and counseling to reduce crime.
The Community Oversight Board (COB) approved a report issuing use of force consent decree recommendations. Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) will work with the COB to implement these recommendations. Read More
Mayor John Cooper tasked members within the Community Oversight Board to explore use of force policies following the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
Compromised legislation that gives localities the authority to establish law enforcement civilian review boards (CRB) successfully passed final votes in the Senate and House of Delegates Wednesday afternoon, and now goes to the governor’s desk for final approval.
Joint conference committee reports for Senate Bill 5035 passed the Senate (21-Y 17-N) and for House Bill 5055 passed the House (53-Y 35-N), mostly along the party lines of both chambers. Read More
The Senate sent a number of bills to be considered by joint conference committees, and appointed conferees to join their colleagues in the House of Delegates to consider legislation on Wednesday.
Three or four Senators and Delegates are assigned to different conference committees and must try to agree on compromised language for similar bills from each body or the legislation will die. If compromised versions are agreed upon, those bills will go back to the House and Senate for a final passage vote. Read More
The Virginia House of Delegates passed its two-year $134 billion budget on Tuesday with specific funding for rental and utility assistance, public education, internet access, affordable housing, criminal justice and police reform.
The revised budget from the House does not perfectly lineup with the proposed budget Governor Ralph Northam presented to the General Assembly at the beginning of the 2020 special session. Read More
Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) and Republican challenger Daniel Gade appeared virtually on NBC4 for their first debate. NBC News’ Chuck Todd moderated the debate from Washington, D.C. with a live Zoom audience. Read More
Topics included the Supreme Court nominations, COVID-19, the digital divide, policing, racial justice, immigration, and the election.
The House Committee on Public Safety conformed multiple bills from the Senate relating to police reform on Monday as the 2020 special session enters its fifth week.
Legislation is conformed when there are two similar bills that have both come out of the House and Senate, and are being considered by committees of the other legislative body. Read More
In response to recommendations from a law enforcement task force appointed by Gov. Bill Lee in July, nearly 90 percent of Tennessee’s 400 law enforcement agencies have reviewed and amended their use-of-force policies to comply with new state standards. Read More
The Senate on Wednesday passed two bills relating to the parole board and continued to advance more policing legislation.
The first bill on the Virginia Parole Board, introduced by Sen. Mark Obenshain (R-Rockingham County), aims to provide the public with more transparency on the decisions made by requiring monthly reports on the inmates released and providing the felonies the prisoner was serving time for, among others. Read More
House Democrats blocked discussion of a police reform bill sponsored by Congressman Pete Stauber (R-MN-08). Democratic leaders argued that the more important issue at hand is the “postal crisis.”
Stauber criticized the focus of their session. Read More
Thursday morning on The John Fredericks Show, host Fredericks welcomed Virginia Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax to discuss special session reform priorities. Read More
Virginia’s legislature will meet in a Special Session on August 18, and House Democrats are eyeing new laws and regulations that will place tighter regulations on Virginia police departments and officers.
In a statement released today, the House Democrats listed a myriad of points (detailed at the end of the article) they hope to address by introducing new legislation during the Special Session. Read More
The Minneapolis Charter Council on Wednesday blocked the controversial ballot proposal to disband the police.
In a 10-5 vote, the city’s Charter Council opted to take an extra 90 days to review the proposal. This means that voters will not have the opportunity to vote on the proposal in November. In an online meeting, the Charter Commission members complained that the new measure was vague, might run afoul of state law, and put the council in charge of the proposed department, according to Forbes. Read More
Minnesota’s House and Senate approved the SSHF1 amendment last Monday, a big bill positioned to issue widespread police reform throughout the state. Since its passage 102-29 in the House and 60-7 in the Senate, the bill now rests in the hands of Governor Tim Walz.
SSHF1 is as long as it is weighty in its impact, with around 15 action items up for approval. Not only does it endeavor to further define legal use of force, but it creates and funds an administrative host of units, councils, and boards. Read More
Gov. Tim Walz said he plans to extend his COVID-19 peacetime emergency declaration for another 30 days when lawmakers return to St. Paul Monday for a special session.
The governor announced Friday night that he has convened a special legislative session for July 13, the same day his peacetime emergency declaration is set to expire. According to Minnesota law, the governor must convene both houses of the Legislature if he wishes to extend a peacetime emergency when the Legislature is not in session. Read More
The Minnesota DFL Party launched a new ad campaign this week targeting key Republican state senators who are accused of “standing in the way of passing real police reform.”
Jason Lewis, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, said in a recent interview that Democrats don’t “want reform” so much as they “want a political issue.” Read More
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden told NowThis’ Ady Barkan that he supports redirecting money from police departments into other areas such as mental health care and affordable housing. Read More
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer released a proposal for additional police reform policies on Monday after nearly a month of protests against police brutality and racial inequality across the nation.
The four-pronged plan features policies such as a ban on chokeholds, retention of disciplinary records and a requirement of “duty to intervene” policies. Read More
Two Ohio Democrats introduced a bill Friday to criminalize the use of chokeholds by law enforcement officers in Ohio.
“Chokeholds can cause serious injury or even death. The NYPD ban on chokeholds didn’t prevent the death of Eric Garner. We cannot leave this up to cities and individual departments any more. The state must act. We need greater law enforcement accountability in Ohio,” said Rep. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown), who introduced the bill with Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron). Read More
The Minnesota Legislature’s recent special session ended with no major accomplishments, but the eight-day session will still cost taxpayers an estimated $108,000.
The special session concluded on June 20 after Republicans in the Senate and Democrats in the House failed to reach an agreement on police reform legislation, the allocation of federal coronavirus relief funds, and other leftover business from the regular session, such as a borrowing package for public infrastructure projects. Read More
Rep. Pete Stauber (R-MN-08), a former law enforcement officer of more than 20 years, announced last week that he will carry police reform legislation in the U.S. House.
Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) introduced on Wednesday the Just and Unifying Solutions to Invigorate Communities Everywhere (JUSTICE) Act, a Republican-backed police reform bill that was set in motion after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Read More
Minnesota legislative leaders traded barbs Saturday after a special session collapsed with no deal on revamping policing following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, a session that one group called “a train wreck.”
The two sides may be back at it in another special session next month. Read More
U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) has joined a legislative effort to provide police reform, accountability and transparency.
Blackburn said she became a cosponsor of U.S. Sen. Tim Scott’s (R-SC) Just and Unifying Solutions to Invigorate Communities Everywhere (JUSTICE) Act. Read More
Mayor John Cooper said this week that he has asked the Metro Nashville Police Department to strengthen its policies to “explicitly prohibit the use of chokeholds and to further clarify officers’ duty to intervene.”
However, as the statement from Cooper’s office notes, chokeholds are already prohibited under Tennessee law in most circumstances. Additionally, since the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) doesn’t train officers on the technique, chokeholds are “not allowed per Nashville police policy and have not been allowed for decades,” said the statement. Read More
Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line.
During the third hour, McCabe discussed the Democrat’s immediate agenda and strategy for law enforcement and police reform. He pointed out that their intent is not to defund the police but to federalize it via a blueprint inspired by the Obama administration. Read More
Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – Leahy was joined on the line by author and former Acting Director of ICE Tom Homan.
During the second hour, Homan checks the mayor of Seattle and chief of police and the unlawful order requesting that the chief abandon her precinct. He adds that all of this is designed to create chaos by the Democratic party so they can get rid of Donald Trump in the upcoming 2020 general election. Read More
All shootings by Ohio police officers and any deaths of individuals in custody would be investigated by independent agencies under a proposal announced Wednesday by Republican Gov. Mike DeWine in his first major response to days of protests over police treatment of minorities.
As part of the proposal, the State Highway Patrol, which is under DeWine’s direct supervision, will no longer investigate its own shootings, the governor said. Read More
Following weeks of national protests since the death of George Floyd, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on policing Tuesday that he said would encourage better police practices and establish a database to keep track of officers with a history of excessive use-of-force complaints.
In Rose Garden remarks, Trump stressed the need for higher standards and commiserated with mourning families, even as he hailed the vast majority of officers as selfless public servants and held his law-and-order line. Read More