Some police departments are having a hard time recruiting potential officers as others gear up for what could be another summer of civil unrest.
Demonstrations criticizing officer’s use of force and demanding general police reform last year hurt departments’ recruitment efforts leading to widespread strain, Axios reported Wednesday. Other departments in urban areas are preparing for what could be a summer of violent crime as COVID-19 restrictions ease, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden told NowThis’ Ady Barkan that he supports redirecting money from police departments into other areas such as mental health care and affordable housing.
Two Ohio Democrats introduced a bill Friday to criminalize the use of chokeholds by law enforcement officers in Ohio.
“Chokeholds can cause serious injury or even death. The NYPD ban on chokeholds didn’t prevent the death of Eric Garner. We cannot leave this up to cities and individual departments any more. The state must act. We need greater law enforcement accountability in Ohio,” said Rep. Michele Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown), who introduced the bill with Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron).
All shootings by Ohio police officers and any deaths of individuals in custody would be investigated by independent agencies under a proposal announced Wednesday by Republican Gov. Mike DeWine in his first major response to days of protests over police treatment of minorities.
As part of the proposal, the State Highway Patrol, which is under DeWine’s direct supervision, will no longer investigate its own shootings, the governor said.
Following weeks of national protests since the death of George Floyd, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on policing Tuesday that he said would encourage better police practices and establish a database to keep track of officers with a history of excessive use-of-force complaints.
In Rose Garden remarks, Trump stressed the need for higher standards and commiserated with mourning families, even as he hailed the vast majority of officers as selfless public servants and held his law-and-order line.