Posts Tagged: law enforcement

Opinion

Decertifying bad police officers: The devil is in the details

Police officers on the street providing security during a parade in downtown Los Angeles. (Photo: Beto Rodrigues, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: No one wants to see bad officers removed from law enforcement more than good officers do. When officers act in a way that is grossly inconsistent with the missions and goals of our profession, it only harms our ability to build trust between officers and the communities they have sworn to serve.

News

Safety for pedestrians, cyclists targeted in legislation

A pedestrian crosses Hollywood Boulevard in L.A. (Photo: View Apart, via Shutterstock)

An effort backed by advocates for pedestrians and bicycle riders would set up experimental programs in several California cities to get drivers to obey traffic laws, in part through the use of red-light and speed cameras.

News

Stronger ‘Laura’s law’ wins Assembly approval

Laura Wilcox, whose shooting death in Nevada County inspired "Laura's Law." (Family photo)

Legislation to strengthen California’s 2002 “Laura’s Law,” which gives family members a legal tool to get treatment for their severely mentally ill relatives, has been approved 77-0 by the state Assembly, despite opposition from some California counties, behavioral health directors and a labor union representing employees in local mental-health programs.

News

New law protecting sex workers stirs emotions

A photo illustration of a young girl in custody. (Image: structuresxx, via Shutterstock

The woman, writing to Gov. Gavin Newsom about Senate Bill 233, called herself voiceless.In her letter she told the governor about rapes she’s suffered while homeless and on the streets. Pimps had beaten her. One once threw her out of a hotel, leaving her naked in the parking lot.She feared to call police. They never listened to her before, the unnamed woman wrote.

Opinion

Deadly force proposal needs work

Police officers deployed at a Los Angeles parade. (Photo: Betto Rodrigues)

OPINION: California’s Assembly Bill 931, which would modify the state legal standard governing police officers’ use of deadly force, is a promising advance on existing law, but the current proposal is deeply flawed. To meaningfully reform police practices and properly regulate the use of deadly force, some significant amendments are necessary.

News

Disputed autopsies fuel effort for independent coroners

A dead body in a county morgue. (Photo: John Gomez)

Can law enforcement be trusted to fairly review law enforcement-involved shootings? Some state senators think not, citing the example of San Joaquin County, which saw two forensic pathologists resign after claiming that Sheriff Steve Moore pressured them to change their findings in officer-involved deaths. The pathologists claimed the sheriff pressured them to classify the deaths as accidents.

News

Bills target police conduct, use of force

Sacramento police officers preparing for protests over the shooting of Stephon Clark. (Photo: Kevin Cortopassi, Flickr Creative Commons)

The recent police killing of an unarmed black Sacramento man has left protesters and local politicians demanding revisions to California’s Peace Officer’s Bill of Rights — the decades-old protocol for officers facing disciplinary investigation. But state lawmakers, despite the national attention directed at the shooting of 22-year-old Stephon Clark, have not introduced legislation or even made reference to the 1976 law, known as the POBR.

News

CA ‘rape kit’ backlog under fire

A posed image of a rape victim in a dark tunnel, with the shadow of the rapist in the background. (Photo: ChameleonsEye, via Shutterstock)

Thousands of  California women who said they were raped gave details of their assaults to investigators and provided critical data in “rape kits” — DNA, wounds, semen, hair, fibers — to identify their attackers. But many of the rape kits were not examined in a timely way, caught in a backlog that has angered some lawmakers and women’s groups.

News

Life without parole: Reforms target youthful offenders

Photo illustration: A young woman in custody clings to a chain-link fence. (Shutterstock)

New legislation to overhaul California’s youth criminal justice system includes a key provision that bars life-without-parole sentences for juvenile offenders. Currently, the United States is the only country in the world to impose life-without-parole sentences on minors. Throughout the past decade, the U.S. Supreme Court has handed down decisions that have begun to reverse the trend.

News

California pedestrian deaths decline — finally

Pedestrians crossing Hollywood Boulevard. (Photo: Sean Pavone)

Pedestrian deaths are on the rise throughout the nation, but California is bucking the trend. Preliminary data by the Governors Highway Safety Organization shows an increase in pedestrian fatalities throughout the United States, rising 12 percent to 5,997 in 2016. Yet California, home to the highest number of pedestrian deaths for years, is finally seeing a drop.

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