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October 26, 2021
Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed an ambitious police accountability legislation package on Tuesday.
The legislation was prompted by outcries for racial justice following the deaths of many African Americans in police interactions. The dozens of bills included bans on chokeholds, neck restraints and no-knock warrants. No-knock warrants were blamed for the death of Breonna Taylor. The bills require that officers intervene when a colleague uses excessive force, an aspect inspired by the George Floyd death in which officers stood by. There will also be an independent office created which oversees reviewing the use of deadly force by police officers.
“As of noon today, we will have the best, most comprehensive, most transparent, most effective police accountability laws in the United States,” Inslee said before signing the bills. Inslee put together a task force last year to suggest ways to independently investigate officers when using deadly force. The move followed community outrage over the death of Manuel Ellis as he was restrained by Tacoma police and saying repeatedly that he could not breathe. The Peirce County Sheriff’s Office conducted a botched review of the case in which they failed to disclose that one of its deputies had been involved. Under new legislation these cases will be investigated independently.
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ARTICLE: DUSTIN RODGERS
POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: THE CHRONICLE