|Posted:||January 5, 2021 11:46 AM|
|From:||Senator Art Haywood|
|To:||All Senate members|
|Subject:||Use of Force|
|In the near future, I plan to reintroduce SB 1196 of 2019-20 to amend Title 18, Section 508 regarding the use of force by law enforcement. This bill will mirror House Bill 1664, introduced by Representatives Lee and Gainey.
Title 18, Section 508 (a)(1) states that a peace officer “is justified in the use of any force which he believes to be necessary to effect the arrest and of any force which he believes to be necessary to defend himself or another from bodily harm while making the arrest.” The broad scope of this use of force policy needs to be amended to limit its unfettered use for violence.
This policy change recognizes the value of all human life and dignity. Vesting officers with the authority to use reasonable force and to protect the public welfare requires a careful balancing of all interests. It is imperative we amend Title 18, Section 508 to prevent injustices from being carried out by law enforcement and to protect all people in the Commonwealth.
The legislation would address the use of force and provide for the following:
As a country, it is critical to ensure law enforcement is protecting people. As other states are taking the necessary steps to protect the community, it is important Pennsylvania joins the movement.
I encourage my colleagues to join me in co-sponsoring this important change.