Sac'to Bill, Strongly Opposed By LB's Police Officers Union, Would Limit Legally Allowed Circumstances For Justifiable Police Deadly Force; It Just Advanced In A Sac'to Committee; Where Are LB's Electeds (Including A State Senate Candidate) On This?
See lists of supporters/opponents
See lists of supporters/opponents
|(April 10, 2019, 9:05 a.m.) -- The Long Beach Police Officers Association (LBPOA) calls it one of the two most important bills in Sacramento this year. It's AB 392 that would limit the legally allowed circumstances in which a police officer can use deadly force.
Yesterday (April 9), the Assembly Public Safety Committee voted to advance AB 392 (authored by Assemblywoman Shirley Weber (D, San Diego)) on a party-line vote: Committee Democrats voted "yes" (some saying they did so to allow possible amendments to the bill) while Republicans voted "no."
AB 392 would (among other things) limit a peace officer's use of deadly force basically to circumstances when it's "necessary," changing the current legal standard which allows deadly force when it's "reasonable." That could effectively expose officers to criminal liability if after an officer-involved shooting, a criminal-prosecutor D.A. and a court jury decide the shooting wasn't "necessary." AB 392 would make California the first state in the nation to raise the standard beyond what the U.S. Supreme Court has required.
A key section of the bill provides:
(1) "Deadly force" means any use of force that creates a substantial risk of causing death or serious bodily injury, including, but not limited to, the discharge of a firearm.
[Scroll down for further.]
In firm opposition to AB 392, LBPOA's describes the bill as follows;
[LBPOA website text, April 9, 2019] -- AB-392 is sponsored by the ACLU and is specifically designed to prosecute and incarcerate police officers following an officer-involved shooting. It would aim to change the legal standard of a shooting from "reasonable" to "necessary." It will essentially require a police officer to further put their life at risk and to be second-guessed based on facts known after a shooting. Your very real perception of danger at the moment when you are most at risk will no longer be used to judge the legality of your shooting.
One may speculate on how AB 392's requirement that deadly force must be "necessary" might be applied in circumstances like the officer-involved shootings of Feras Morad (college student ingested hallucinogenic mushrooms, rendered him verbally unresponsive and physically combative) and Doug Zerby (inebriated to unresponsiveness, fatally shot while handling a hose nozzle mistaken for a handgun.) Last month (March 2019), a civil jury awarded $9.8 million to the family of a mentally-ill knife-waving woman fatally shot by officers (Jan. 2017, area 7th St./Bellflower Blvd.) The plaintiffs' law firm issued a statement that it hopes the verdict will change the way officers in Long Beach and other departments respond to people suffering from mental illnesses.
The Assembly Public Safety Committee's legislative analysis included the polarized lists below of AB 392's supporter and opponents. They speak for themselves, but it's worth noting: the League of CA Cities (advocacy group for City Halls statewide in which the City of LB pays dues) opposes AB 392 (potential taxpayer liability). The City of Long Beach, which has had a sizable share of officer-involved shootings, is absent from both lists. To date, LB's Mayor and policy-setting Councilmembers (nearly all of whom have received campaign contributions and/or officeholder account sums from LBPOA) haven't publicly discussed either AB 392 or a rival bill supported by law enforcement, SB 230 (focuses on officer training.)
REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION: Support Alliance for Boys and Men of Color (Co-Sponsor) American Civil Liberties Union of California (Co-Sponsor) Anti Police-Terror Project (Co-Sponsor) Black Lives Matter (Co-Sponsor) California Faculty Association (Co-Sponsor) California Families United 4 Justice (Co-Sponsor) Communities United for Restorative Youth Justice (Co-Sponsor) PICO California (Co-Sponsor) PolicyLink (Co-Sponsor) Stop Terrorism and Oppression by the Police Coalition (Co-Sponsor) United Domestic Workers of America-AFSCME Local 3930/AFL-CIO (Co-Sponsor) Youth Justice Coalition (Co-Sponsor) All Saints Church, Pasadena Alliance San Diego American Friends Service Committee Amnesty International USA Annual Pan African Global Trade & Investment Conference Anti-Defamation League Asian Americans Advancing Justice - California Asian Law Alliance Asian Pacific Environmental Network Asian Solidarity Collective Associate Professor Stoughton at the University of South Carolina AB 392 Page 12 AYPAL: Building API Community Power Bay Area Student Activists Black American Political Association of California Brothers, Sons, Selves Coalition California Black Health Network California Calls California Civil Liberties Advocacy California Immigrant Policy Center California Latinas for Reproductive Justice California League of United Latin American Citizens California Nurses Association California Pan-Ethnic Health Network California Public Defenders Association California State Conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People California Urban Partnership California Voices for Progress Center for African Peace and Conflict Resolution Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice Change Begins With ME Children's Defense Fund - California City and County of San Francisco District Attorney Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice Cloverdale Indivisible Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights Coalition for Justice and Accountability Committee for Racial Justice Community Coalition for Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Council on American-Islamic Relations, California Courage Campaign Davis People Power Disability Rights California Drug Policy Alliance Earl B. Gilliam Bar Association Ella Baker Center for Human Rights Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC) Exonerated Nation Fair Chance Project Fannie Lou Hamer Institute Fathers & Families of San Joaquin Feminists in Action Los Angeles Friends Committee on Legislation of California Greater Sacramento Urban League Green Party of Sacramento County HAWK Institute Hillcrest Indivisible Human Impact Partners If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice Indivisible CA 37 Indivisible CA-43 AB 392 Page 13 Indivisible CA: Statestrong Indivisible Colusa County Indivisible Marin Indivisible Peninsula and CA-14 Indivisible Project Indivisible Sausalito Indivisible South Bay-LA Indivisible Stanislaus Indivisible Ventura Indivisible Watu Indivisible: San Diego Central Indivisibles of Sherman Oaks Initiate Justice InnerCity Struggle International Human Rights Clinic at Santa Clara Law Japanese American Citizens League, San Jose Chapter Jewish Voice for Peace, San Diego Chapter Justice & Witness Ministry of Plymouth United Church of Christ Justice Teams Network Kehilla Community Synagogue LA Voice League of Women Voters of California Legal Services for Prisoners with Children Los Angeles Black Worker Center Mid-City Community Advocacy Network Motivating Individual Leadership for Public Advancement National Center for Youth Law National Juvenile Justice Network National Lawyers Guild Los Angeles National Nurses United Oakland Police Commission Oakland Privacy Orange County Communities Organized For Responsible Development Orchard City Indivisible Our Revolution Long Beach Pacifica Social Justice Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans Paving Great Futures Peace and Freedom Party of California People Power LA | West Pillars of the Community Professor Alpert at the University of South Carolina Progressive Students of Miracosta College Public Health Advocates Public Health Justice Collective Resistance Northridge-Indivisible Reverend Al Sharpton-National Action Network Revolutionary Scholars Riverside Temple Beth El Rooted In Resistance Sacramento Area Black Caucus Sacramento Jewish Community Relations Council Sacramento LGBT Community Center San Diegans for Criminal Justice Reform San Diego City College's Urban Scholar's Union San Diego High School's Cesar Chavez Service Club San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association San Diego LGBT Community Center San Francisco No Injunctions Coalition San Francisco Peninsula People Power San Francisco Public Defender's Office San Jose/Silicon Valley NAACP Santa Barbara Women's Political Committee Service Employees International Union, Local 1000 Showing Up for Racial Justice, Bay Area Showing Up for Racial Justice, Boston Showing Up for Racial Justice, Greater Dayton Showing Up for Racial Justice, Marin Showing Up for Racial Justice, Sacred Heart Showing Up for Racial Justice, San Diego Showing Up for Racial Justice, Santa Barbara Sister Warrior Freedom Coalition Social & Environmental Justice Committee of the Universalist Unitarian Church of Riverside Southeast Asia Resource Action Center The Pacific Palisades Democratic Club The Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans The Praxis Project The Resistance Northridge-Indivisible The W. Haywood Burns Institute The Women's Foundation of California Think Dignity Together We Will/Indivisible - Los Gatos United Food and Commercial Workers, Western States Council We The People - San Diego White People 4 Black Lives Women For: Orange County Youth Alive! Youth Forward 20 Private individuals Oppose Anaheim Police Association Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs Brawley Public Safety Employee Association Brisbane Police Officers Association California Association of Code Enforcement Officers AB 392 Page 15 California Association of Highway Patrolmen California College and University Police Chiefs Association California Correctional Supervisors Organization, Inc. California Narcotic Officers' Association California Peace Officers Association California Police Chiefs Association California Rifle and Pistol Association, Inc. California State Sheriffs' Association California Statewide Law Enforcement Association Chula Vista Police Officers Association El Cerrito Police Employees Association Fresno Police Officers Association Glendale Police Officers' Association Hanford Police Officers' Association Hawthorne Police Officers Association Kern Law Enforcement Association League of California Cities Los Angeles County Professional Peace Officers Association Los Angeles Police Protective League Napa County Deputy Sheriff's Association North Valley Chapter of PORAC Peace Officers Association of Petaluma Peace Officers Research Association of California Riverside County Sheriff's Department Riverside Sheriffs' Association Sacramento County Alliance of Law Enforcement San Diego County Probation Officer Association San Diego District Attorney Investigator's Association San Diego Harbor Police Officers Association San Francisco Police Officers Association San Joaquin County Deputy Sheriff's Association San Jose Police Officers' Association Santa Barbara County Deputy Sheriff's Association Solano County Deputy Sheriffs Association Stockton Police Officer's Association Sunnyvale Public Safety Officers Association Union City Police Officer's Association Ventura County Deputy Sheriffs Association 11 Private individuals
Law enforcement groups including LBPOA have lined up in favor of a rival bill, SB 230, that focuses on officer training; Assemblyman Patrick O'Donnell (D, Long Beach) supports SB 230, which LBPOA says "will create standardized use of force policies and training for police officers in areas such as de-escalation tactics and responding to potentially violent mental health crisis situations. SB-230 will give every California police department, from the smallest to the largest, the ability to provide its officers with the training they need to keep our community, and themselves, safe." (SB 230 hasn't advanced to any Committee hearings at this point.)
The LBPOA's leadership has chosen to endorse LB Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez for state Senate. If elected in a June runoff, she may cast votes on either or both bills. During her five years in office, working class residents of Gonzalez's 1st Council district have endured what LBREPORT.com has repeatedly decried as LB's worst inequity, a "tale of two cities" with a disproportionate number of shootings and homicides.
LBPOA's leadership also chose to remain silent as LB's previous Mayor and Council erased 208 citywide budgeted police positions for taxpayers. In 2016, LBPOA was the single largest campaign contributor in support of a City Hall-sought 2016 "blank check" sales tax increase. Since then, the current Council (whose incumbents it endorsed for re-election) has restored 22 citywide deployable officers for taxpayers to date, leaving LB taxpayers without 186 citywide deployable officers that LB previously had and no longer has.
April 10, 1:13 p.m. Links to AB 392 text and Ass'y Public Safety Committee legislative analysis plus key bill text added.
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