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S 119 - Amends Standards for Police Use of Force Policies - Vermont Key Vote

Stage Details

Title: Amends Standards for Police Use of Force Policies

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Title: Amends Standards for Police Use of Force Policies

Vote Smart's Synopsis:

Vote to amend and pass a bill that amends and defines standards for when police may use physical force to make an arrest.

Highlights:

 

  • Requires a law enforcement officer to only use the force that is objectively reasonable and proportional to effect an arrest, prevent escape, or overcome the resistance of an individual the officer has reasonable cause to believe has committed a crime or achieve another lawful law enforcement objective (Sec. 1).

  • Requires the decision by a law enforcement officer to use force to be evaluated carefully and thoroughly, and in a manner that reflects the gravity of that authority and the serious consequences of the use of force by law enforcement officers in order to ensure that the officers use of force is consistent with law and agency policies (Sec. 1).

  • Requires, when a law enforcement officer knows that a subject’s conduct is the result of the following, the officer to take that information into account when determining the amount of force appropriate to use on the subject (Sec. 1):

    • A medical condition or mental impairment;

    • A developmental disability or physical limitation;

    • Language barrier or drug/alcohol impairment; or 

    • Any other factor beyond the subject’s control.

  • Authorizes a law enforcement officer to use deadly force upon another individual only when it is determined reasonable and necessary to defend against an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury or to apprehend a fleeing individual in any felony that threatened or resulted in death or serious bodily injury (Sec. 1).

  • Requires a law enforcement officer to cease the use of deadly force as soon as the individual is under the officer’s control or no longer poses an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury to the officer or another individual (Sec. 1).

  • Prohibits a law enforcement officer from using deadly force against an individual based on the danger the individual poses to themselves if the officer believes the individual does not pose an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury to the law enforcement officer or another individual (Sec. 1).

  • Requires a law enforcement officer to intervene when they observe another officer using a prohibited restraint on an individual (Sec. 1).

  • Specifies that this act will take effect immediately upon passage (Sec. 5).

  • Defines “deadly force” as any force that creates a substantial risk of causing death or serious bodily injury and “force” as the physical coercion employed by a law enforcement officer to compel an individual's compliance with the officer’s instructions (Sec. 1).

  • Defines “prohibited restraint” as the use of any maneuver on an individual that applies pressure to the neck, throat, windpipe, or carotid artery that may do the following, including (Sec. 1):

    • Prevent or hinder breathing;

    • Reduce the intake of air; or

    • Impede the flow of blood or oxygen to the brain.

Title: Amends Standards for Police Use of Force Policies

Title: Amends Standards for Police Use of Force Policies

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