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Representative Price Signs on as an Original Cosponsor of the Justice in Policing Act

June 8, 2020
Press Release

Raleigh, NC (June 8, 2020) --  Today, Congressman Price (NC-04) became an original cosponsor of the Justice in Policing Act introduced by Representatives Karen Bass (D-CA), Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, and Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Kamala Harris (D-CA).

“In big cities and small towns, Americans are standing up for justice – for George Floyd, for Breonna Taylor, for Ahmaud Arbery, and for the long list of Black Americans whose lives were cut short by police brutality or racial violence,” said Congressman Price. “Protestors are demanding meaningful, lasting change in policing and an end to the systemic racism ingrained in our society. We hear you, and we will take action.

“I’m joining the Congressional Black Caucus as an original cosponsor of The Justice in Policing Act to transform how law enforcement interacts with the communities they are sworn to protect. This legislation would increase accountability, end the use of choke holds, create a national police misconduct registry, reform qualified immunity, amend use of force standards, and bolster community oversight, among other critical reforms.  This legislation is a consequential first step to addressing police misconduct and moving toward racial justice in America.”

The Justice in Policing Act seeks to make several key reforms:

  • Revises federal criminal police misconduct statute from “willful” to “knowingly or with reckless disregard”, removing the current legal roadblock to prosecuting law enforcement officers.
  • Reforms “Qualified Immunity” to enable civilians to recover damages when law enforcement officers violate their constitutional rights.
  • Enables the Department of Justice (DOJ) Civil Rights Division to conduct “pattern and practice” investigations into discriminatory or unconstitutional policing practices by granting subpoena power to the DOJ and providing grants to state attorneys general.
  • Creates a grant program for state attorneys general to independently investigate law enforcement misconduct or excessive use of force by state and local law enforcement.
  • Forms a national police misconduct registry for officers at all levels.
  • Requires States to report all incidents involving use of force to the DOJ.
  • Prohibits any form of racial, religious, or discriminatory profiling at federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, and provides DOJ-issued grants to implement best practices and trainings. All law enforcement agencies requesting this federal funding must report data on all investigatory activities to the DOJ.
  • Establishes a training program to cover racial bias, implicit bias, procedural justice, and the duty to intervene, and require this training for all federal law enforcement agencies.
  • Bans “No-Knock” warrants in all federal investigations of drug cases.
  • Outlaws the use of chokeholds and carotid holds by law enforcement.
  • Alters the use of force standard by requiring the implementation of de-escalation techniques and increasing the standard to use force only to prevent death or serious bodily injury.
  • Limits the transfer of military-grade weaponry to state and local law enforcement.
  • Orders federal uniformed police officers wear body cameras and marked federal vehicles to have dashboard cameras.
  • Declares it a federal crime to conspire to or violate existing hate crime laws.

A full summary of the bill can be found here.