george floyd

Police Reform

Oct 2, 2020
A protester holds up a sign saying "Defund the police" on June 6, 2020, in New York.
Ragan Clark / Associated Press

This episode originally aired Sept. 22, 2020.

Calls for police reform sparked by the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor have echoed in cities and statehouses across the country.

Protesters on the sidewalk of the Ohio Statehouse face Columbus Police officers, who stood in the middle of High Street, on June 1, 2020.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

An Ohio board is developing a statewide standard for police departments to follow when dealing with mass protests.

Columbus Police confront protesters at a demonstration downtown on June 2, 2020.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

An independent review of complaints against Columbus Police during this summer's protests found that the vast majority of excessive force allegations were unprovable due to lack of evidence or an inability to identify officers.

Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio), center, spoke Friday, Aug. 28, 2020 at the March on Washington.
Joyce Beatty / Twitter

Taking the stage at a rally Friday commemorating the 1963 March on Washington, Columbus congresswoman Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio) emphasized the need for police accountability legislation.

After George Floyd was killed by police in Minneapolis in late May, waves of anguished and outraged Americans took to the streets, to livestreamed city council meetings and to social media to denounce racism.

Protesters called for police reform, defunding or outright abolition; for an end to qualified immunity for officers; for reinvestment in underfunded communities; for schools, companies and communities to address their own complicity in racial inequity.

And they called for Confederate monuments to come down.

A Cuyahoga County grand jury on Wednesday handed down 10 indictments related to the rioting in Downtown Cleveland on May 30.

The 10 people indicted range in age from 18 to 38, with aggravated riot, theft and vandalism the most frequent charges.

Protesters march in downtown Columbus on June 2, 2020.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office has opened a new office to promote diversity and equity, following massive protests in Columbus over police violence and racism.

Democrats saw a surge in voter registrations in June as protests against racism and police brutality were launched across the country, rebounding briefly from a slump in new voter filings caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Amnesty International says it has documented 125 separate instances of violence against protesters for racial justice in the U.S. over an 11-day period earlier this summer.

In a report published Tuesday, the human rights organization says that in the five years since 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, Mo., "there has been a disturbing lack of progress ... in ensuring that police officers use lethal force only when there is an imminent risk of death or serious injury to themselves or others."

Protesters on the sidewalk of the Ohio Statehouse face Columbus Police officers, who stood in the middle of High Street, on June 1, 2020.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

Two months after massive protests took over downtown Columbus, City Council has signed off on asking voters if they want independent police oversight.

Minnesota lawmakers have voted to ban police use of chokeholds, part of a law enforcement accountability measure sparked by the Memorial Day killing of George Floyd, who died after a Minneapolis police offer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

The bill's most high-profile sections would place new limits on police use of force and prohibit "warrior-style training" — which encourages officers to act aggressively in a way that "deemphasizes the value of human life or constitutional rights," the legislation states.

John Sanders was partially blinded by a police projectile during the George Floyd demonstration in Downtown Cleveland on May 30. It turns out he wasn’t the only one.

Transcripts of police body camera video in the minutes leading up to George Floyd's death show that he pleaded about 20 times that he couldn't breathe and that one of the officers expressed concern about Floyd's well-being but was rebuffed by his superior.

Columbus Police confront protesters at a demonstration downtown on June 2, 2020.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

A group of protesters have filed a federal lawsuit against Columbus Police for injuries they sustained in late May and early June, alleging that officers used excessive force and violated their constitutional rights.

From left to right: A photograph of Nicole Derifield-West's niece to the left, herself, and niece flying a kite.
Nicole Derifield-West

WOSU's Letters from Home collects stories about day-to-day lives during the coronavirus pandemic. This week, we heard from Ohioans who shared their experiences and stories.

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