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Doug  Wyllie

Doug Wyllie

Doug Wyllie has authored more than 1,000 articles and tactical tips aimed at ensuring that police officers are safer and more successful on the streets. Doug is a Western Publishing Association “Maggie Award” winner for Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column. He is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers’ Association (CPOA), and a member of the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA).
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Patrol

Proposed California Use-of-Force Bill Won't Make Anyone Safer

Requiring police use of force to be "necessary" begs the question of who would decide necessity and under what criteria.

April 13, 2018  |  by Jack Dunphy

In my April 6 column here on PJ Media, I mentioned the legislative effort in California to address police shootings and change the legal standard by which they are judged. Assembly Bill 931, bearing the Orwellian title of Police Accountability and Community Protection Act, would make it unlawful for a police officer to use deadly force unless it was “necessary.” It sounds reasonable, of course. After all, don’t we want police to refrain from shooting people unless it’s necessary?

But the question then arises: Necessary to whom? At their April 3 press conference introducing the legislation, the bill’s authors and other speakers made it clear. If a police officer’s use of deadly force is deemed to be unnecessary to them and to people who share their beliefs, that officer can expect to be prosecuted and, if not imprisoned, run through a years-long ordeal that will ruin him physically, emotionally, and financially. And this, they promise, will protect the community.

It will not.

In previous columns I have referred to the U.S. Supreme Court case of Graham v. Connor, which, along with Tennessee v. Garner, governs how any police use of force should be evaluated. For our purposes, the key passage of Graham is this: “The ‘reasonableness’ of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight.” It bears reminding that the decision was written by then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist; there were no dissenting votes on the Court. In the world of the courts, this is as close as one gets to receiving the law at the top of Mount Sinai.

As of this writing, there is no text of AB 931 to be found on the Assembly’s website, but at their press conference we were informed that the utopians in the California State Assembly find the standard set forth in Graham to be unsatisfactory and thus now propose their own. Under ordinary circumstances, legislation that affects the police so significantly is drafted after consultation with organizations like the Police Officers Research Association of California. To date, no such consultation has occurred.

Read Complete Article at PJ Media

 


Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

LegAdv @ 4/13/2018 8:30 AM

Interestingly, the text of AB 931 on the California Legislature website pertains solely to suicide prevention. Perhaps it's one of those 'gut and amend' bills that the proponents of this monstrosity plan to use.

LAHeat @ 4/13/2018 8:42 AM

California once a great state is now leaning so far left that it will eventually fall into the ocean. It’s not called the “left coast” for nothing. This is one more attempt to de-police the police. If you can’t defund the police, as BLM has proposed, what better way than to create an environment that will cause police to stand down, fail to engage in any proactive policing than the threat of indictment and being on the news and You Tube the next day. This is the perfect storm. The state through creative design of legislative proposals has passed Prop 47, 57, and AB 109. We have thousands of x-cons who were released from prison long before their release date, with no skills other than what they know - crime. Crime rates are slowly rising, laws once deemed felonies are either now misdemeanors or non-existent. Couple that with simmering legislation on removing monetary bail and going to a system of cite backs for defendants. California is in trouble!

Jon Retired LEO @ 4/14/2018 5:29 PM

I think that we have all learned by now that anything that comes out of the left part of California is just plain ridiculous.

Joe @ 4/18/2018 2:16 PM

Kind of ironic, that after a life-altering lesson like that, an officer is typically treated like they didn't learn anything from it and tossed. As if typically, you would shoot the wrong person and not have any emotional problems at all. No siiiirreee(Sarcasm). There's very few headcases like that that make it through vetting. Even better is when people ignore the fact that training itself is a BIG problem. You teach people to be nervous at wrong times, they'll make mistakes - it's no wonder that ex-military are considered safer handlers of deadly weapons. They went through some very stressful situations and learned to deal with people who may or may not be hiding a knife to stab them in the back. :/

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