NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Legislators are introducing a bill that would help with prosecution in cases involving excessive force by police. On Tuesday, legislators called out the lack of criminal prosecution in unjustified shootings and use of force in New Mexcio.
Federal law requires the state to report any of these incidents but officials say right now, there is no place where the data is collected. This bill would require the governor herself to keep records of all police shootings and would also help district attorneys and attorney generals keep each other in check.
“The governor would maintain a list that has the date, the officers involved, the incident and so answering the federal questionnaire we will have all the data compiled into one place,” said Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez. The new proposal would require reports to be submitted to the governor and attorney general when an officer’s use of force leads to death or great bodily harm.
“These acts of racial violence by law enforcement and other in positions of authority have resulted in our communities losing trust and faith in the notion of police as law enforcement safety officers,” said Rep. Patricia Roybal Caballero. If the bill passes, district attorneys would be allowed to use a special prosecutor to determine charges.
The bill would also require the information to be part of the public record. It will be introduced in the upcoming special session.