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Police ‘use of force’ changes, new policies recommended to take effect immediately

To fulfill her commitment to close the gap between law enforcement and the community, Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome has been meeting with law enforcement officials and community leaders over the past several weeks.

As a result of this collaborative effort, the Mayor’s Advisory Council on Law Enforcement and Community Service and Protection is recommending policy changes occur within the Baton Rouge Police Department that align with national best practices surrounding use of force.

“We believe that the implementation of these policy changes will enhance existing BRPD policies and compliment academy and in-service training,” Broome said.

The following are the agreed upon policy changes. These changes in policy will take place immediately.

· Officers are required to give a verbal warning, before using deadly force, except where there are exigent circumstances.
· Officers are required to de-escalate situations, when possible, before using force.  De-escalation strategies include disengagement, area containment, waiting out a subject, summoning reinforcements, calling in specialized units or employing other strategies.
· Officers will not employ chokeholds or strangleholds, except in emergency circumstances where it is immediately necessary to use deadly force and the authorized weapons are inoperable, inaccessible or otherwise not available.
· Officers are prohibited from discharging a firearm at a moving vehicle unless the vehicle or the persons within the vehicle pose an immediate deadly threat to others.
· Officers will be required to intervene to prevent another officer from using excessive force and to immediately report when they observe the use of excessive force by another officer.

The Mayor’s Advisory Council on Law Enforcement and Community Service and Protection include:  Fr. Rick Andrus, Rev. Robin McCullough-Bade, Broderick Bagert, Attorney Alfreda Tillman Bester, Constable Reginald Brown, Renee’ Brown, Gary Chambers, Councilman Lamont Cole,  Kelvin A. Cryer, Chief Carl Dabadie, Mark Dumaine,  Cleve Dunn Jr., Col. Mike Edmonson, Sheriff Sid Gautreaux, Casey Hicks, Pastor Donald Hunter, Josh Howard, Mary Jane Marcantel,  E.J. Milton, Michael A.V. Mitchell, Tonja Myles, Rev. Reginald Pitcher, Joyce Plummer, Arthur Reed,  Dereck Rovaris PhD, Michael W. Victorian, Pastor Charles Wallace, Pastor Lee T. Wesley, and Katara Williams Ph.D.

                                                                                                    

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