Today's Law As Amended


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AB-66 Police: use of force.(2019-2020)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.
 The Legislature finds and declares the following:
(a) Beginning the week of May 25, 2020, there have been numerous reports of peaceful protestors, along with countless other bystanders and reporters, maimed by rubber bullets and other projectiles by law enforcement.
(b) Kinetic energy projectiles, such as rubber or plastic bullets, beanbag rounds, and foam rounds, and chemical agents, including pepper balls, pepper spray, and tear gas, have been increasingly used as crowd control weapons or less lethal weapons to respond to protests and are designed to incapacitate individuals by inflicting pain or sublethal injury.
(c) A 2017 British Medical Journal study found that 3% of people hit by rubber bullets died of their injuries and 15% were permanently injured.
(d) Researchers and medical professionals have called for an end of the use of rubber bullets on peaceful protestors because of their potential to cause serious injury, disability, or death.
(e) The 1925 Geneva Protocol categorized tear gas as a chemical warfare agent and banned its use in war. The Chemical Weapons Convention outlawed the use of tear gas in 1997, but still made it legal for law enforcement to use.
(f) Health experts have warned that the use of tear gas could help with the spread of COVID-19 because it irritates the lungs and makes persons cough.
(g) While most police departments have their own policies on their use of force and less lethal weapons, there are no statewide or national standards.
(h) It is the intent of this act to establish clear minimum standards for policies and reporting procedures regarding California law enforcement agencies’ use of less lethal kinetic energy projectiles and chemical agents.

SEC. 2.

 Section 12525.2 of the Government Code is amended to read:

12525.2.
 (a) Beginning January 1, 2017, each law enforcement agency shall annually monthly  furnish to the Department of Justice, in a manner defined and prescribed by the Attorney General, a report of all instances when a peace officer employed by that agency is involved in any of the following:
(1) An incident involving the shooting of a civilian by a peace officer.
(2) An incident involving the shooting of a peace officer by a civilian.
(3) An incident in which the use of force by a peace officer against a civilian results in serious bodily injury or death.
(4) An incident in which use of force by a civilian against a peace officer results in serious bodily injury or death.
(5) Commencing on January 1, 2023, an incident in which a peace officer uses a kinetic energy projectile or chemical agent, as those terms are defined in Section 832.14 of the Penal Code, resulting in a reported injury to any person. Each law enforcement agency shall also annually, commencing on March 31, 2024, publish a summary of incidents described in this paragraph.
(b) For each incident reported under subdivision (a), the information reported to the Department of Justice shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:
(1) The gender, race, and age of each individual who was shot, injured, or killed.
(2) The date, time, and location of the incident.
(3) Whether the civilian was armed, and, if so, the type of weapon.
(4) The type of force used against the officer, the civilian, or both, including the types of weapons used.
(5) The number of officers involved in the incident.
(6) The number of civilians involved in the incident.
(7) A brief description regarding the circumstances surrounding the incident, which may include the nature of injuries to officers and civilians and perceptions on behavior or mental disorders.
(c) Each year, the Department of Justice shall include a summary of information contained in the reports received pursuant to subdivision (a) through the department’s OpenJustice Web portal pursuant to Section 13010 of the Penal Code. This information shall be classified according to the reporting law enforcement jurisdiction. In cases involving a peace officer who is injured or killed, the report shall list the officer’s employing jurisdiction and the jurisdiction where the injury or death occurred, if they are not the same. This subdivision does not authorize the release to the public of the badge number or other unique identifying information of the peace officer involved.
(d) For purposes of this section, “serious bodily injury” means a bodily injury that involves a substantial risk of death, unconsciousness, protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member or organ.

SEC. 3.

 Section 832.14 is added to the Penal Code, to read:

832.14.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature that peace officers be accountable at all times to uphold their oaths, and are held to the highest standards of conduct, pursuant to Section 3 of Article XX of the California Constitution and existing law, to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of California, including the rights of the people to safely and freely speak and assemble.
(b) Except as otherwise provided in subdivision (d), kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents shall not be used by any law enforcement agency to disperse any assembly, protest, demonstration, or other gathering of people.
(b) Chloroacetophenone tear gas, commonly known as CN tear gas, or 2-chlorobenzalmalononitrile gas, commonly known as CS gas, shall not be used by any law enforcement agency.
(d) Kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents shall only be deployed to disperse an assembly, protest, demonstration, or other gathering of people in accordance with all of the following requirements:
(1) The use is objectively reasonable to defend against injury to any individual, including any peace officer.
(2) Deescalation techniques or other alternatives to force have been attempted, when objectively reasonable, and have failed.
(3) If objectively reasonable to do so, repeated audible announcements are made announcing the intent to use kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents.
(4) Persons are given an objectively reasonable opportunity to disperse and leave the scene.
(5) An objectively reasonable effort has been made to identify persons engaged in violent acts and those who are not, and kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents are targeted toward those individuals engaged in violent acts. Projectiles shall not be aimed indiscriminately into a crowd or group of persons.
(6) The increased risk of hitting an unintended target due to unexpected movement of members of the crowd is considered.
(7) An objectively reasonable effort has been made to extract individuals in distress.
(8) Kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents are used only with the frequency, intensity, and in a manner that is proportional to the threat and objectively reasonable.
(9) Medical assistance is promptly procured or provided for injured persons.
(10) Peace officers who deploy these weapons have received training on their proper use that is approved by the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.
(11) Projectiles are aimed at or below a persons’s navel area and shall not be aimed at the head or neck, or at any person who is running away.
(e) Kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents shall not be used by any law enforcement agency solely due to a violation of an imposed curfew, verbal threat, or noncompliance with a law enforcement directive.
(f) If a federal law enforcement agency is operating in the jurisdiction of any city, that city shall request that federal law enforcement agency refrain from the use of kinetic energy projectiles or chemical agents to disperse any assembly, protest, demonstration, or other gathering of people, unless that use is consistent with subdivision (d).
(g) Nothing in this section prevents a law enforcement agency from adopting more stringent policies.
(h) For the purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) “Kinetic energy projectiles” means any type of device designed as less lethal, to be launched from any device as a projectile that may cause bodily injury through the transfer of kinetic energy and blunt force trauma. For purposes of this section, the term includes, but is not limited to, items commonly referred to as rubber bullets, plastic bullets, beanbag rounds, and foam tipped plastic rounds.
(2) “Chemical agents” means any chemical which can rapidly produce sensory irritation or disabling physical effects in humans, which disappear within a short time following termination of exposure. For purposes of this section, the term includes, but is not limited to, items commonly referred to as pepper balls, pepper spray or oleoresin capsicum, and CN tear gas or CS gas.
SEC. 4.
 If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.