Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed has filed Board Bill 63 to update the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department’s Use of Force Policy.
“By having an updated and effective use of force policy, officers are able to make better decisions in the moment, which can ultimately reduce or eliminate the use of force. It will provide more strategies for them to use to avoid deadly force,” said Reed.
The bill will require the Commissioner of Police to update the Use of Force Policy to include:
1. Ban on officers from using chokeholds or strangleholds as a use of force method;
2. Require officers to use de-escalation tactics when appropriate and possible in place of use of force tactics;
3. Establish a duty to intervene policy, which would require officers to either stop or attempt to stop another sworn employee when force is being inappropriately applied or is no longer required; and
4. Edit the current use of force reporting policy to include comprehensive reporting and require officers to complete a report if a weapon is drawn and pointed at a civilian(s) regardless if the weapon was discharged or not.
“These policy changes are long overdue. Recent events have shown that the majority of people in St. Louis and throughout the Country are ready and eager for change,” said Reed.
The goal of the bill is to provide accountability, transparency and dramatically reduce and ultimately eliminate the use of force and deadly tactics. The bill will also make the internal policies into permanent law. The bill will improve the current use of force policy enacted by the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, which could lead to a better relationship between the police and the communities they serve.
The bill will be first read and introduced at the Board of Aldermen this Friday, June 12 at 10 a.m.