California Police Unions Lose Legal Battle to Keep Misconduct Records Private
California police unions tried their hardest to fight a new law requiring the release of police misconduct records to the public by claiming the law does not apply to the dates before it went into effect on January 1.
But an appeals court on Friday ruled that the law applies to all dates because the requests will be made with the law fully implemented.
So now we have the chance to see just how dirty these cops are as if the countless videos we've seen the Rodney King beating was not enough of an indicator.
After all, if the cops have nothing to hide, as they like to tell citizens, then they should have nothing to worry about.
And they really don't considering the release of the records will not lead to any disciplinary action against the officers.
It just provides a more transparent picture into those self-proclaimed heroes who are sworn to protect and serve.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle:
A new law granting public access to police misconduct records and investigations of officers’ use of force applies to all records that existed when the law took effect this year no matter when they were created, a state appeals court has ruled in a decision with immediate statewide impact.
Police unions in numerous localities, including Contra Costa County and five of its cities in the current case, sued to block release of records created before 2019. The unions, which had opposed the disclosure law in the Legislature, contend the law was not drafted to apply to earlier records.
Superior Court judges around the state have generally disagreed with the unions. But in the first decision with broad impact, the First District Court of Appeal in San Francisco late Friday published an earlier two-page order in the Contra Costa case making all existing records available to the public.
An attorney for the police unions, Michael Rains, said the decision shows the judges do not "give one hoot about the rights of police officers."
The truth is, for decades, the state did not give one hoot about the rights of citizens, ensuring that the cops who abuse them remain protected by confidentiality laws. The law, SB1421, was introduced by Sen. Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley.
Read the decision here.