At Least 13 States Considering New Police Accountability Measures


More than a dozen states are considering legislation aimed at increasing police accountability after incidents in Ferguson, Mo.; Staten Island, N.Y.; and Cleveland that left unarmed black men dead at the hands of officers, reports the Washington Post. Dozens of bills addressing body cameras for police have been filed in at least 13 states. Other proposals would change the way police departments report officer-involved shootings, racial profiling and the way courts deal with low-level offenders. “There is a concrete coherent legislative agenda that we are pushing for,” said Cornell Brooks, president and chief executive of the NAACP. “We've been doing this from state capital to state capital, as well as here in Washington, D.C.”

Some of the proposed responses have bipartisan support. In other cases, familiar partisan divides between Republicans and Democrats, and civil rights groups and police organizations, are slowing down legislative action. “Our citizens deserve to be and feel safe, and our law enforcement deserve our respect and support,” said Missouri Rep. Lincoln Hough, a Republican. “I say all that to illustrate the complexity of these issues. There is not a one size fits all approach to this issue.”

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