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Police Misconduct Accountability Act

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Police Misconduct and Our Choice to have Accountability 

After graduating and enjoying the social work program, I am now working on a second associates degree in Criminal Justice.  I plan to work on the advocacy side for criminal and social justice.  I have recently been working on an idea to submit to Georgia legislature.  It began after watching this clip: , a Fox 5 Atlanta link with walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman's comment on body cams.  Is Joe saying he won't hold the "one bad apple" accountable by allowing any and all bad apples?   The comment about someone posting something wrong on Facebook exemplifies the lack of understanding that Facebook pages can be configured to have only “notice” posts not allowing any comments to be made.  

It is a violation of the first amendment, and a violation of oath, if comments are deleted from official government pages where comments are allowed to be made. Dissent is not a crime, but disbanding body cams surely raises the question of transparency and accountability.

We can expect accountability.

The idea/bill is entitled "Police Misconduct Accountability Act."  It comprises of two mandatory rules for all law enforcement: 1) That all standard operating procedures of police interactions with civilians be recorded through body cams. 2) That all private and public law enforcement facilities housing inmates have audio/video cameras recording 24 hours a day, or on motion alert to record. These measures can provide judicial review for cases of officer misconduct.

Inmates lose some (search and seizure) reasonable expectations of privacy while incarcerated.  The police misconduct accountability act protects inmates rights (especially 1st, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 14th amendments) and civilian rights by proving the loss of professionalism within standard operating procedures of law enforcement.  It allows for judicial review of criminal allegations.  Also, the police misconduct accountability act applies when police interactions occur.  This leaves what some may constitute as "misconduct" or "misuse of force" to be defined.  How do you think police misconduct is defined?  Is it safe to say that state laws can also be applied to cases of criminal conduct committed by police?   Or, will some of our tax dollars continue to pay settlements for police misconduct when criminal charges are dismissed?

Is this justice?

The Richard Metcalf case in Erie County motivated me to draft this idea.  His case was reopened earlier this year by a different Supreme Court appointed attorney.  It's proof law enforcement methods do not work with mental health patients, too.  Richard Metcalf died after being beaten to death by correction officers.

or another video of a mental health individual named Kelly Thomas being beaten to death

What about a K9 dog being commanded to attack a juvenile wanting to die?  All happening while police find joy in his face nearly being eaten off.

One simply can be informed of american prisons sterilizing women by force to see misconduct.

Or, a simple battery case like this one in Philadelphia.

These videos are absolutely horrific. Under no circumstances should multiple police use cruel and unusual punishment.  I don’t believe any human can stop resisting pain when it is continually inflicted. Excessive force can enable resistance and reactions to pain.

There are countless events that prove these brutalities.

Police misconduct may always occur to some extent within society.  My hope is that this idea/bill will be considered because of the increased amount of police misconduct in our country.  The line of conduct that divides professionalism and misconduct can be blurred.  Without accountability in law enforcement, police misconduct is sure to occur.  With mandated documented audio and video files per incident, judicial review can be expanded for many cases of misconduct.


Luke Carter

Student of criminal and social justice reforms.



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