Update on the revised use of force policy
ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. -- The South Bend Mayor presented a revised draft of the new police use of force policy at a public safety board meeting on Wednesday.
The use of force policy is part of an ongoing effort to make changes to the police department—a conversation that stemmed after the Eric Logan shooting in 2019.
The use of force policy has been in the works for years. During the public safety board Wednesday, mayor James Mueller mentioned some of the revisions with the language in the policy.
“There was the use of imminent threat, imminent risk, and imminent danger throughout the documents. And so, the thought there was to combine it to imminent threat and we proposed a definition for that,” Mueller said.
The new use of force policy was at the top of the agenda during the public works meeting. Board members received the updates the day before and needed more time to fully consider the changes.
Mueller presented several revisions to the board, including some additional language and definitions added to the policy, to make certain police and civilian scenarios more clear, which is something community leaders have been asking for.
“We’ve taken another look at the 300.4, which is the deadly force section. It was a little clunky, in terms of structure so I think the revision does resolve a lot of those issues,” Mueller said.
Pastor Claval Hunter, a member of Fath in Indiana, an organization advocating for police accountability and, reform was at the meeting. He tells me the process has taken a while, but the policy must be done right.
"I appreciate the openness of communication and the transparency. And so I think, the more input we get from the community, and the community will be able to trust the process and what’s happening,” Hunter said.
The board will revisit the revised proposal at the next meeting in May.