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State law now defines police 'use of force'

Posted at 9:45 a.m. on Monday, August 9, 2021

The Brillion News

MADISON I- Governor Tony Evers on Monday, August 9, signed into law Senate Bill 120, which creates a standard Use of Force definition for law enforcement, and provides a penalty if this standard is violated.

The definition was part of the package of reforms coming out of the Assembly Speaker's Task Force on Racial Disparities and its Subcommittee on Law Enforcement Policies and Standards.

“The [committee] worked diligently for seven months to craft real reform. For an extra month I chaired a work group of experts in law enforcement, religious leaders, and leaders in the community to create a standard Use of Force definition,” said task force co-chair state Representative Shelia Stubbs, D-Madison. “It was an honor to lead this effort, and I am proud to announce that real work has led to real results. Through difficult conversations and with diverse perspectives, we were able to find common ground and create a meaningful standard for the use of force. Now this standard is law across the state of Wisconsin.”

The law ensures that every law enforcement agency has a standard for use of force policy, by eliminating discretion and creating uniformity.

“I want to thank my fellow Co-Chair, Majority Leader Representative Jim Steineke, R-Kaukauna, for trusting my leadership to create this definition," Stubbs said. "I also want to thank the task force members that put extra time and extra effort to make a meaningful impact ... I want to thank leaders on both sides of the aisle for helping move this legislation forward. Without your hard work, none of this would be possible.”


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