After former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted in the death of George Floyd, some Pennsylvania House Democrats introduced legislation to ban police officers from using chokeholds.
Rep. Patty Kim (D-Dauphin, Reps. Stephen Kinsey (D-Philadelphia) and Jason Dawkins (D-Philadelphia) are the sponsors of the bill which bars any kind of action that inhibits breath or the flow of blood to the brain due to physical position.
As published by the Pennsylvania State of Representatives website, the memo refers to the fatal consequences of chokeholds as a police procedure.
“This past summer, we saw protests erupt around the United States and the Commonwealth over the filmed death of an African American man, Mr. George Floyd, in Minneapolis. Mr. Floyd died due to asphyxiation brought about by sustained pressure on the neck by law enforcement officers. This case brings up memories of another African American man, Mr. Eric Garner, who also died from law enforcement misuse of the chokehold.”
Not an appropriate tool
“For this reason, we will be introducing legislation to outlaw the use of the standard chokehold in making an arrest as well as any action that inhibits breath or the flow of blood to the brain due to physical position. As we all saw clearly in the case of Mr. Floyd, Mr. Garner, and others, chokeholds are not a safe or appropriate tool for law enforcement in the course of their daily duties,” the memo states.
According to wtae.com, Rep. Kim said the bill is not a complete solution for law enforcement reform but is a good start. “We acknowledge that there was too much force used on George Floyd. What’s next? It’s police reform. It’s changing the ways we do things now. We have a long road ahead of us. This is just one of the reforms that I think is important right now.”