Today's Law As Amended


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SB-622 Civil detention facilities: state investigation.(2019-2020)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Part 3 (commencing with Section 87) is added to Division 1 of the Civil Code, to read:

PART 3. Civil Detention

87.
 The Legislature finds and declares, in keeping with its obligation to safeguard the humane and just treatment of all individuals located in California and its traditional police powers, that it is the intent of the Legislature that this measure ensure a prompt, thorough, and transparent investigation of the death of an individual who is in civil detention in this state.
88.
 (a) In the event of the death of any individual who is in civil detention within this state all of the following shall apply:
(1) The custodian of the civil detention facility shall notify the Bureau of Investigation within the Department of Justice immediately, but in any case, no more than two hours after the individual is pronounced dead.
(2) The Department of Justice shall assume jurisdiction over the investigation of the death. The Bureau of Investigation shall immediately open an investigation into the cause and circumstances of the death.
(3) The custodian of the civil detention facility shall allow the Bureau of Investigation immediate access to the facility, including all premises where the individual was held.
(4) The investigation shall examine and determine the cause and manner of the individual’s death and whether the facility was in compliance with all applicable standards and contractual obligations governing the individual’s civil detention.
(b) In the event of the death of any individual that occurs within 90 days of the individual’s release from a civil detention facility within the state, the Department of Justice may assume jurisdiction over investigation of the death. The Bureau of Investigation may immediately open an investigation into the cause and circumstances of the death.
(1) The investigation shall examine and determine the cause and manner of the individual’s death and whether the civil facility from which the individual was released within 90 days prior to the individual’s death was in compliance with all applicable standards and contractual obligations governing the individual’s civil detention.
(2) The custodian of the civil detention facility shall allow the Bureau of Investigation immediate access to the facility, including all premises where the individual was held.
(c) (1) Within 30 days after opening an investigation pursuant to subdivision (a) or (b), the Bureau of Investigation shall submit a preliminary report on the findings of its investigation to the Department of Justice.
(2) Within 90 days after the individual’s death, the Department of Justice shall make a public report setting forth any conclusions regarding the cause and manner of the individual’s death and any findings regarding compliance with all applicable standards and contractual obligations governing the individual’s civil detention by the facility.
(3) Within 30 days after the Department of Justice makes its public report, the civil detention facility shall submit a formal response to the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice shall make that response publicly available.
89.
 (a) In addition to any other access and investigative powers afforded to the Bureau of Investigation by any other law, the bureau shall have all of the following authority in connection with an investigation of a death or significant threat to the life or safety of an individual who is or was in civil detention in this state:
(1) Reasonable, unaccompanied access to the facility within which the incident is reported to have occurred, in order to, among other things, inspect, view, and photograph all areas that are used by, or are accessible to, detainees in the facility.
(2) Access to, and the ability to examine and copy, all relevant records within the control of an entity that is responsible for the civil detention of any individual at all times requested to investigate the incident.
(3) Access to, so as to be able to interview, any employee, detainee, or other individual who may have knowledge of the incident.
(4) Authority to pursue administrative, legal, and other appropriate remedies or approaches to ensure the protection of the rights of individuals who are or were in civil detention in this state.
(b) For purposes of this section, “reasonable, unaccompanied access” means access that permits the bureau, without undue interference, to monitor, inspect, and observe conditions in the civil detention facility, to meet and communicate with facility employees and detainees privately and confidentially on a regular basis, formally or informally, by telephone, United States mail, electronic mail, and in person, and to review records privately and confidentially, in a manner that minimizes interference with the activities of the facility, that respects privacy interests protected under existing law and honors an interviewee’s request to terminate an interview, and that does not jeopardize the physical health or safety of facility employees or detainees.
90.
 (a) All records prepared, owned, used, or retained by a civil detention facility operated by a public agency, as defined in subdivision (d) of Section 6252 of the Government Code, are governed by the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code).
(b) All records prepared, owned, used, or retained by a civil detention facility operated by an entity other than a public agency that are related to an investigation conducted pursuant to this part shall be subject to the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code).
91.
 For purposes of this part, “civil detention facility” or “facility” means a county, local, or private entity responsible for a locked detention facility in which persons are being housed or detained for purposes of civil immigration proceedings in California, including any county, local, or private locked detention facility in which an accompanied or unaccompanied minor is housed or detained on behalf of, or pursuant to a contract with, the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement or United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
SEC. 2.
 The Legislature finds and declares that Section 1 of this act, which adds Section 1670.91 of the Civil Code, furthers, within the meaning of paragraph (7) of subdivision (b) of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution, the purposes of that constitutional section as it relates to the right of public access to the meetings of local public bodies or the writings of local public officials and local agencies. Pursuant to paragraph (7) of subdivision (b) of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution, the Legislature makes the following findings:
Because the people of the state have an obligation to safeguard the humane and just treatment of all individuals located in California, records concerning the prompt, thorough, and transparent investigation of the death or significant threat to the life or safety of an individual who is in civil detention in this state should be made open to public inspection.
SEC. 3.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district under this act would result from a legislative mandate that is within the scope of paragraph (7) of subdivision (b) of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution.
However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains other 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.