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Whitmer Calls For End To Chokeholds, Other Police Reforms

Lansing police patrol unit
Reginald Hardwick

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer called Monday for an end to the use of police chokeholds and limiting no-knock warrants.

The recommendations come as states have been considering ways to prevent racial bias and address police brutality in the wake of George Floyd ’s death. The move follows efforts earlier this month to expand a commission that sets policing standards.

The Democrat’s plan calls for categorizing racially-motivated 911 calls harassing individuals as hate crimes, requiring ongoing training for law enforcement to maintain a license and directing state health officials to recommend best practices for police when dealing with a person with mental illness, according to a news release.

“All Michiganders, no matter their community or the color of their skin, deserve equal treatment under the law,” said Whitmer, adding her plan would ensure police “treat all Michiganders with humanity and respect.”

Earlier in June, Whitmer added civilians and the director of the Department of Civil Rights to the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards.

Law enforcement officials who were supportive of that change said Monday that they’d be open to considering new ideas.

State Police Director Col. Joe Gasper said in a statement that he’s committed to working with Whitmer “to increase accountability and improve transparency in order to build community support and trust.”

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