WA AG Issues ‘Model Use-of-Force’ Policy for Law Enforcement
As part of the 'police reform' package wanted by Gov. Inslee and pushed through by state Democratic legislators, the State Attorney General's office was required to release a mode 'use-of-force' guide by July 1st, 2022. It's here.
It's interesting to note of the various law enforcement agencies utilized, only one was from Eastern WA.
It would take pages to go through this 'guide,' but it is noteworthy that the following law enforcement agencies were included as part of the state's so-called guidance team:
"... Camas Police Department, Hoquiam Police Department, Mason County Sherriff’s Office, Port Angeles Police Department, Skagit County Sheriff’s Office, Spokane Police Department, Seattle Police Department and the Washington State Patrol." (From WA AG news release)
And no explanation was given as to why information was utilized from New Jersey's Attorney General's office.
This 15-page guide basically puts on paper the laws that have already handcuffed law enforcement officers all over the state, but this one mainly deals with the use of force. Some of the items that caught our eye included:
*From the section about officers using all available de-escalation tactics prior to use of force, one of the items reads:
"When possible, officers shall use all available and appropriate de-escalation tactics prior to using physical force."
"Requesting and using available support and resources, such as a crisis intervention team, a designated crisis responder, other behavioral health providers, or back-up officers, including more experienced officers or supervisors;"
This sounds like bringing out the 'entire' police force for one call. Considering the serious defunding of law enforcement in many western WA cities, including Seattle, this doesn't appear viable. Seattle recently stopped investigating certain sex crimes due to a lack of detectives, and they no longer answer certain types of calls--it's being outsourced.
Or, this phrase:
"For physical force to be necessary, a reasonably effective alternative does not appear to exist and the use of force must be a reasonable and proportional response to effect the legal purpose intended or to protect against the threat posed to the officer or others"
It also says law enforcement officers 'shall not' utilize Tasers towards a person's head, face, genitals, or chest.
And finally, there is also a section mandating that any off-duty officer or other person in a law enforcement capacity is required to report this to a supervisory officer.
To read the entire 'guide' click here.
25 True Crime Locations: What Do They Look Like Today?