The Senate sent to President Obama a bill providing strong incentives for states and federal law-enforcement agencies to report deaths in custody and during arrests, reports the Wall Street Journal. Among 105 of the largest U.S. police departments, 45 percent of killings by officers went unreported to the FBI. Reporting is optional and records from nearly every agency in Florida, New York and Illinois aren't in the FBI's data.
The new law would tie federal dollars to state reporting and require the federal government to report all deaths of people detained, arrested or in the process of being arrested and incarcerated. Public demands for transparency on such killings have increased since grand juries in New York City and Missouri declined to bring charges against white police officers in the deaths of unarmed black men, Eric Garner, 43, and Michael Brown, 18. Largely absent from the debate have been accurate statistics regarding killings by police.