An appeals court reinstated a New York City law prohibiting officers from using excessive restraint during an arrest. It reversed the lower court ruling which labeled the measure as unconstitutionally vague, per The Associated Press.
The law was passed in 2020 following the murder of George Floyd. Floyd died by a lack of oxygen after Minneapolis officers kneeled on his back and neck for nearly 10 minutes. The NYC law provided guidelines to what officers can and can’t do during an arrest to avoid arbitrary or discriminatory enforcement, per AP’s report. These guidelines include prohibiting the use of pressure on a person’s torso.
More from AP News:
The measure is sometimes referred to as the “diaphragm law” because it barred officers from restraining people “in a manner that compresses the diaphragm.”
The Police Benevolent Association said it was reviewing its legal options, which could include bringing the matter to the state’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.
The union’s president, Patrick Lynch, said Thursday’s ruling “deals a direct blow to our fight against the violence that is tearing our city apart.”
“This ill-conceived law makes it virtually impossible for police officers to safely and legally take violent criminals into custody — the very job that New Yorkers are urgently asking us to do,” Lynch said in a written statement.
The law is also supposed to account for chokeholds which have been banned by the NYPD for a while and illegal under state law. This may turn out to be helpful but I wonder what affect it will have on an officer’s gun use.