LOS ANGELES – Two members of the Board of Supervisors called Thursday for Sheriff Alex Villanueva and all law enforcement departments in Los Angeles County to adopt eight use of force restrictions recommended by the advocacy group Campaign Zero, including restricting the use of chokeholds and requiring a warning before shooting.
Supervisors Janice Hahn and Mark Ridley-Thomas filed a motion in support of the policies — dubbed “8 Can’t Wait” and aimed at police departments nationwide — which range from prohibitions on shooting at moving vehicles to comprehensive reporting on not only use-of-force incidents but the threat of force.
Some are already part of existing use-of-force rules for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Hahn said none of the law enforcement agencies operating within the county have implemented all eight.
“The people are demanding change,” Hahn said in a statement. “These are eight steps that can be taken right now by all of our law enforcement departments that are proven effective in reducing the number of people killed by police and sheriff’s deputies. Most of the police departments in L.A. County have already implemented one or two of these policies, but no one has implemented all eight… We cannot wait any longer.”
Campaign Zero is led by Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson, data scientist Samuel Sinyangwe and policy advocate Brittany N. Packnett Cunningham and is developing data-driven policies to end police brutality.
“The killing of George Floyd once again exposes the harsh reality that the African-American community has to endure in our country. We will not accept this injustice,” Ridley-Thomas said. “I believe that the eight reforms identified by Campaign Zero in this motion give us specific and clear changes to reduce the use of force by law enforcement that has resulted in this senseless violence. I urge dozens of police agencies in the county to adopt the policies immediately.”
The supervisors pointed out that while sheriff’s deputies are not trained in the use of chokeholds, the department’s policy does not explicitly ban the use of chokeholds, strangleholds and the knee-on-neck hold used on George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer now facing a second-degree murder charge in his death.
The eight recommendations are:
— requiring officers to intervene to stop another officer from using excessive force;
— banning or at least restricting the use of chokeholds and strangleholds, including carotid restraints, to situations where deadly force is authorized;
— requiring officers to de-escalate situations before using force;
— using a use-of-force continuum that defines and limits the types of force that can be used in response to various forms of resistance;
— requiring officers to give a verbal warning before using deadly force;
— prohibiting officers from shooting at people in moving vehicles unless the person poses a deadly threat by means other than the vehicle;
— requiring officers to exhaust all other reasonable alternatives before resorting to using deadly force; and
— requiring comprehensive reporting that includes both uses of force and threats of force.
The union that represents sheriff’s deputies pushed back hard against the supervisors’ motion in a statement issued Thursday afternoon.
“I am very disappointed that you feel the need to make a knee-jerk reaction motion that is insulting to the deputies of Los Angeles County,” said Ron Hernandez, president of the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs. “In a time when our deputies have been ordered to work unprecedented hours in overlapping emergencies, instead of openly praising them for the job they do, you take the word of a biased anti-law enforcement group. This motion indicates that you believe deputies are looking to hurt or kill people, as opposed to reacting to a situation to which they have been called, or observed.”
Hernandez pushed back specifically against the notions that deputies don’t already work to de-escalate volatile situations, intervene to stop other officers using excessive force, give a warning before using force, and stop short of firing on a vehicle unless there is another threat of deadly force.
“Your suggestions in this motion are the equivalent of us making demands that you, as individual board members, be required to not receive kickbacks, engage in illegal political favors, and/or abuse your powers, for personal gain,” Hernandez said.
The ALADS leader said he stood with other law enforcement members who condemned what happened in Minneapolis.
“Make no mistake. The actions of the four Minneapolis police officers is appalling to all law enforcement, and I look forward to the proof that the justice system works,” Hernandez said, as he called on Hahn and Ridley-Thomas to collaborate with the union rather than using deputies as scapegoats.
A 2016 study by Campaign Zero concluded that adding additional reforms was associated with a 15% reduction in police killings for the average department; departments implementing more than four reportedly saw the largest drop.
The analysis also found that departments with more restrictive policies in place also had lower rates of assaults on officers and officers killed in the line of duty.
Civil rights leaders called Thursday morning for a meeting with Sheriff Alex Villanueva to share video footage from residents that they say captures excessive use of force against protesters over the last several days.
Viral videos — which may or may not be part of the cache that activist Najee Ali and others want to share with Villanueva — show officers beating protesters with batons. Several journalists have also reported being injured by police — at least one struck by a baton and another hit in the neck by a rubber bullet — while covering protests.
In response to video of deputies in Compton apparently beating an alleged looter already on the ground and not resisting, Villanueva also posted on Twitter, urging anyone with footage to reach out to his department.
Then he added, “This is another example of why we so desperately need the @LACountyBOS to fully fund@LASDHQ’s body-worn camera project. The public deserves full transparency.”
Villanueva has been pressing for a bigger budget, even as the Board of Supervisors pushes him to cut department overtime and find solutions to a department deficit.
Hahn and Ridley-Thomas’ motion is expected to be heard by the full Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, June 9.
They have also asked the Civilian Oversight Commission, a watchdog agency overseeing the Sheriff’s Department, to report back in less than 30 days on recommendations for strengthening use-of-force policies. The commission, which met Thursday morning, has an ad hoc committee that has spent several months reviewing those policies.
18 comments for "Two L.A. County supervisors call for adoption of ‘8 Can’t Wait’ policies"
I’m happy to see hundreds of thousands of people from all walks of life coming together to protest peacefully against racial injustice and police brutality. We have the right to assemble peacefully, and excessive force (brutality), like what happened to the peaceful protesters in front of the church in D.C., so Trump could get his photo-op holding up the Bible.
So are the terrorist who burn the church down where Trump was holding the bible, Are they going to get charged with Hate Crimes? Yeah wouldnt count on it. Real Double Standard!!!
Ron….St. John’s Episcopal Church where Trump held up Bible was not burned down.
Only a newly-renovated room caught fire and according to the pastor no one know who or what started the fire. This does not represent the majority of the peaceful protestors.
One room was damaged, Ron. The rector of the church realizes as most of us do, that the majority of protesters are peaceful.
If there is a record voter turnout November 3, then the protests will have been worth it.
Historically, protests haven’t made that much difference or we wouldn’t have had the need for the them now.
Racists seem to be reliable voters and they’ve helped make the minority Republican party the majority governing party in Washington and in most states.
If minorities want justice and fair treatment, they must show up at the voting booths each and every time from now on. No excuses.
Get rid of rampant crime within law enforcement.
Why would anybody want to be a cop now? Wait till alot of cops decide to quit and the crime sky rockets because they dont have enough officers. Nobody is going to be joining the force. LIBERALS HAVE GONE CRAZY!!!
I lean liberal and I think to end car chases it would be a great idea to place a slug through the radiator.
Well maybe its time to put the Police in rich upper , middle class areas , and just leave the poor areas and let them all kill each other in the poor neighborhoods. Now they want to defund the police anyway. Let them all kill each other off. They will create their own Genocide. The poor will suffer the most there will be no jobs cause they burn down the buildings. Let them live with No Police see how that goes. Thats what they want. LIBERALS HAVE COMPLETELY GONE INSANE!!!!
You know there are no more liberals like Biden used to be. They’re all going batsh!t crazy far left socialist. Old-time liberals look like fascists to them.
At least old liberals had some kind of twisted logic and patriotism, but sadly, those days are over.
Keep fighting the good fight!
These stupid idiots of the Lancaster sheriffs department should be ordered by their higher-ups to wear body cameras throughout their entire shift (except for breaks of coarse) for the sake of “COMPREHENSIVE REPORTING”. Such cameras are cheaper than their iPhones or their handguns and considering that these lancaster cops can’t tell their [removed] from a hole in the ground (as said best by the L.A.P.D.) they sure as hell need full accountability as civil servants by their employers and the ones that put food on their table. You lancaster cops are actually good for nothing, you use your job position to bump [removed] with others that aren’t playing your stupid game. You were feckless human beings before you were taken under the wings of the [removed] of law enforcement. Most of you are cowards that hide behind a dirty bible belt. You’ve allowed tweeker scumbags to tread on, harrass and assault people like me that mind their own business. You [removed] have succumbed to their manipulations and made it as if I was the provocator asking for trouble. Please know this, most of you crooked spineless [removed] have been a depressing [removed] for me. Curse you for bringing me to the brink of insanity you [removed]. I want most of you to drown painfully in you stupid egos untill you prolapse, but what I want even more is for the better angels to take over and fire you [removed] so that Lancaster can finally be well represented by the truly brave, noble and honorable. Thats something that these [removed] will never be in their entire career even if they were seriously injured in the line of duty… Knock on wood.
Alby is off the meds again…..c’mon man, I am sure you get them free….
Well Alby How about the 13%pull their pants up and learn how to behave. Stop committing crimes. Thats a start.
The BRINK of insanity?!?
Lets have these two bright supervisors do a test run in the streets of their districts of all 8 and see how long they live.
AV Illegal says
Drop the gun or I’ll…….oh damn, the gangster with the gun shot me before I got the warning completed. I bet there is a form for that.
The only type of people who disagree with this are pathetic PoS bigots lol