On Monday, Antioch City Councilmember Lamar Thorpe said in the wake of the George Floyd incident involving four Minneapolis police officers, he has outlined his agenda for police reform in the City of Antioch.
Thorpe says he endorses eight specific policy recommendations that are part of the national 8 Can’t Wait Campaign. Two of eight recommendations are policy in Antioch.
Following are the eight policy recommendations:
- Ban police use of chokeholds and strangleholds, including the carotid restraint
- Require officers to de-escalate situations whenever possible
- Require officers to exhaust all options before shooting, including less lethal force
- Ban officers from shooting at moving vehicles
- Establish a use of force continuum that restricts using the most severe force to most extreme situations
- Require comprehensive reporting for each time an officer fires or points their weapon at someone
- Require verbal warnings before using deadly force (already an Antioch policy)
- Require officers to intervene to stop excessive force by other officers (already an Antioch policy)
Thorpe said Monday he is calling on Antioch Chief of Police to enact the remaining six.
“Something is happening with the consciousness of America. People all over the country and here in Antioch are saying ‘enough is enough,’ and they expect change,” Thorpe said. “After 15 days of sustained protest, demonstrations and civil unrest, it’s time to take action, before one more senseless killing takes place. Let’s think globally and act locally.”
Thorpes actions come after last week Governor Gavin Newsom called for new statewide standard for use of force in protests. Acts of violence against peaceful protestors will not be tolerated. Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez introduced a bill to Introduce Standards on Use of Rubber Bullets by Police. Meanwhile, Assemblyman Mike Gipson introduced AB 1196 to eliminate Carotid Artery Restraint used by police on suspects.
Monday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker announced they would be introducing new police reform bill to ban chokeholds, limit “qualified immunity” for police officers, create a national misconduct registry, end the use of no-knock warrants in drug cases. It would also make lynching a federal crime among other dramatic changes. Rep Karen Bass sponsored the bill.
During the June 9, 2020 council meeting, Thorpe says he will call for the formation of a City Council Ad-Hoc Committee on Police Reforms to be composed of council members, legal advisers, police leaders, police union representatives and community advocates.
The role of the committee will be to examine potential long term reforms in the following areas:
- Demilitarize our local police
- Increase police accountability
- Improve police hiring practices
- Excessive use of force
- Budget appropriations
“While it’s important for our city to take immediate preventative steps, such as banning use of carotid restraints, creating successful police reforms will require the involvement of the entire community,” Thorpe said. “The ad-hoc committee approach is one of the best tools we have as city councilmembers to create lasting policy change that works.”
Thorpe posted his original release on his website.