Minneapolis to ban police chokeholds in wake of Floyd death

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A graffiti by artist ‘EME Freethinker’ that expresses support of U.S. protests over the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody, and others are pictured in the public park ‘Mauerpark’ in Berlin, Germany, Friday, June 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Negotiators for the city of Minneapolis have agreed with the state to ban the use of chokeholds by police and to require police to report and intervene anytime they see an unauthorized use of force by another officer.

The moves are part of a stipulation between the city and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, which launched a civil rights investigation this week in response to the death of George Floyd in police custody. The City Council is expected to approve the agreement Friday.

The agreement, which will be enforceable in court, would require any officer, regardless of tenure or rank, to immediately report the use of any neck restraint or choke hold from the scene to their commander or their commander’s superiors.

Similarly, any officer who sees another officer commit any unauthorized use of force, including any choke hold or neck restraint, must try to intervene verbally and even physically. If they don’t, they’d be subject to discipline as severe as if they themselves had used the prohibited force.

The agreement also requires authorization from the police chief or a designated deputy chief to use crowd control weapons, including chemical agents, rubber bullets, flash-bangs, batons, and marking rounds. And it requires more timely decisions on disciplining officers.

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