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Wilson Center – Database to Track Police Use of Force Legislation

Wilson Center for Science and Justice at Duke Law: “This Registry contains information about legislation regarding policing introduced in states and at the federal level since 2018. The initial impetus for creating this collection was the surge of lawmaking concerning policing at the federal, state and local levels, beginning in Spring 2020, including in response to the killing of George Floyd. To better understand lawmaking in response to calls for reform, at the Wilson Center for Science and Justice, we began tracking the introduction of policing-related legislation. Since that time, new topics and approaches to lawmaking concerning police have become more common. This database, which has been updated continually, includes almost 3,000 bills, federal, state, and local, across the range of topics related to law enforcement, introduced from Fall 2019 to present. We plan to both update the database over time to track this legislation.

  • The policing legislation database is searchable by state, date, topic, and includes citations, summaries, and the text of each statute. We used a series of searches in the LexisNexis legislative tracking service to assemble the collection, as well as state legislative websites. We did not include changes to local patrol guides, since law enforcement manuals are often not easily accessible. All legislation introduced relating to police and law enforcement was included, and therefore, a wide range of topics were covered, from funding, to police use of force, to body cameras, to training, to the right to record police officers. We did not include laws that made revisions to criminal procedure or substantive criminal offenses.
  • The Wilson Center analyzed the laws passed between 2018–2022 and released a report of our findings in May 2023. We describe below several key areas in which legislation has been introduced and enacted in recent years in The Laws That Regulate Police: The Wilson Center’s Policing Legislation Database.”
  • See also via Campaign Zero – Mapping Police Violence – Law enforcement agencies across the country are failing to provide us with even basic information about the lives they take. So we collect the data ourselves. Scroll to explore.

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