DENVER (CBS4)– Wide-ranging reforms to law enforcement will become law in Colorado. Friday night, Gov. Jared Polis tweeted he supports Senate Bill 217, also known as a police accountability bill, and will sign it when it gets to his desk.
My statement on the passage of SB20-217 Enhance Law Enforcement Integrity:
— Governor Jared Polis (@GovofCO) June 13, 2020
“I’m so proud the Colorado General Assembly has stepped up across party lines to say that we’re going to do something, we’re going to demand justice and we’re going ensure that there’s accountability in our law enforcement,” said Rep. Leslie Herod who introduced the bill just 10 days ago.
The bill will require body cameras for officers throughout the state and make video public. It will require more data to be collected to try and find racial profiling sooner. Chokeholds and shooting at a fleeing suspect, known as “fleeing felon,” are also eliminated as common practices.
Recently, Allen George in Rifle and De’Von Bailey in Colorado Springs were shot and killed by police while running away. Officers were cleared of wrongdoing in both cases.
Overseeing the vote in the state House on Friday were family and friends of Bailey and Elijah McClain who died after an encounter with Aurora Police in 2019.
“The law has changed because of him. It was because of Elijah McClain and De’Von Bailey that I had legislation ready to go,” Herod said. “There’s not much I can do to bring him back or to change the outcome of his case. But what I can do is change it for people moving forward. And if it does that, our law enforcement officers are held accountable both criminally and civilly.”
The bill has received vast bipartisan approval in both the Senate and House. Herod believes the weeks of protesting helped fuel the movement to get the bill passed with so much support and so quickly.
“I’m really proud of the protesters and Denver for stepping up and demanding it,” Herod said. “You gave us momentum to make change and bring justice to these families.”