Providence Community Safety Act Passes
Providence, RI – Backed by social justice warriors and civil rights groups, the Providence city council unanimously approved the “Community Safety Act” on Thursday, which makes their community significantly less safe. The new law places restrictions on police actions which are much more strict than the law otherwise allows.
Civil rights groups have been following a trend recently where they are less concerned about defending people’s actual constitutional rights, and more caught up in trying to secure additional rights for criminals. Legal and ethical investigative techniques used by police officers are more commonly becoming prohibited by police department policies in order to avoid lawsuits which improperly claim that police officers are violating people’s Constitutional rights.
It is already the job of state and federal courts to make rulings on what police officers are legally allowed to do, and what they are not allowed to do. Unfortunately, because the Constitution doesn’t afford criminals the level of protection that these groups would wish, they are now trying to pass laws which place those additional restrictions on police officers. In Providence, they succeeded.
Whether done intentionally or out of ignorance, the new law offers an unprecedented level of protection for criminals while preventing police officers from enforcing laws. The massive law is almost 4,500 words long, and includes some provisions which are outright absurd. The worst parts of the law are as follows:
Electronic Data Collection Report
Officers are required to complete an Electronic Data Collection Report any time they stop somebody. The form requires a laundry list of information about the contact, which then needs to be made publicly available in an online database. This is similar to Chicago PD “investigatory stop reports” which require officers to fill out a long form after every stop. This practice has resulted in Chicago Police Department officers reducing proactive contacts by an estimated 82% while shootings in the city are skyrocketing.
When you require police to fill out a form that takes longer to complete than the actual traffic stop, you aren’t only unnecessarily eating up the officers’ time, officers are unlikely to bother stopping people...
Doesn't matter. The city council has "done something." Oh, joy.
I remember when my agency got "out front" of racial profiling data requirements, this was around 2001. Every patrol lieutenant and captain was brought in and informed that effective immediately, we would start collecting racial stop data on sheets, turned in with your work card. The lieutenant, cut him some slack, this was something pulled out of the air and done in a matter of hours (something that should be staffed, looked over by lawyers, etc), and he said, "Well, your numbers are going to be analyzed. Basically, for every 100 whites you pull over, conduct anything self initialed on, they will check how many you released, gave tickets to, arrested, etc. Those numbers should be more or less the same. If not, you can be investigated by internal affairs, or the DA, or the attorney general, suspended, fired, or prosecuted..."
To say the least, it didn't help, to paraphrase Darth Vader, "motivate us."
In roll call, people would take the "self initiated" sheet, put their name, unit and date on. Then they would write "0" over it. These people handed their calls for service, but they completely stopped anything self initiated. Narcotics busts, tickets, everything dropped. In one station, traffic stops fell over 60%. Our traffic enforcement division has a similar downward fall in citations issues.
Well, the tickets (i.e the money) got people's attention and we got, in writing, "clarifying guidance." However, I don't see that coming in Providence.
Part of the text says, “When conducting any investigatory activity, law enforcement shall not rely on race, ethnicity, color, national origin, use of a foreign language, limited English proficiency, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, political affiliation, religion, housing status, physical or mental disability, or serious medical condition as a basis, in whole or in part, for suspecting that a person has committed or is about to commit a crime, unless the officer’s decision is based on a specific and reliable suspect description that includes not just these characteristics, but other identifying characteristics or information as well.”
So if an officer is dispatched to a shooting where the suspect is a white male using crutches, according to this law, it’s discrimination to stop that person unless you have other specific identifiers...
Apparently so. I once asked dispatch for an ambulance for an injured man, describing him as a, "black male, conscious and breathing, cuts to the arm and complaining of..." I was told to not describe his race. Excuse me, when the ambulance crew transports him they will need to know who needs the attention, not to mention that is exactly the information they will record.
...Suspects should be searched by somebody of the same gender identity
Honestly, this isn’t a big deal, I’m just waiting for somebody to ask, “Is the tri-gender officer working tonight?”
No, I got some idiot calling himself a woman I'll just bump dispatch, tell them for a few minutes I"m self identifying as a woman, conduct the search and then transfer back to full man.
Good lord, this is gonna be fun. Something I've noticed is idiots in big cities don't understand, without proactive police work, the criminal are proactive and assertive. And they will continue to be that way.
A "community activist" once asked why there are more cops in poor and minority neighborhoods. To paraphrase John Dillinger, "That's where the crime is." And the law abiding citizens who inhabit those communities will be the ones who suffer for this stupidity. I'll lay money the city council members who voted for this are living behind gated communities.
Sorry Providence. Remember to vote these idiots out next election. Assuming you're not shot going to the polls.