Union: I-940 Requires Cops To Aid Wounded Suspects Before Their Victims

The Washington State Patrol Troopers Association released a document outlining issues with I-940.

Olympia, WA – The Washington State Patrol Troopers Association is warning voters that Initiative 940 would require officers to render aid to suspects before their victims, among other issues.

The push to amend the law came after civil rights groups had complained that it was nearly impossible to convict a police officer of a crime in Washington.

The I-940 ballot measure was created with the intent of making it easier to prosecute police officers for negligent shootings, according to KCPQ.

The initial draft of the legislation eliminated the requirement that prosecutors must prove actual malice in order to get a conviction in an on-duty officer-involved shooting.

It also required a large amount of unfunded police training in first aid and de-escalation, the Tri-City Herald reported.

However, police noted that there were major issues in the language of the initiative.

Law enforcement groups met with legislators and opposition groups in order to craft a compromise bill that all sides could live with.

The goal was to pass the law in the legislature and save the state the costly expense of fighting a flawed initiative out on the ballot.

"Even though it isn't perfect, it is a great outcome," Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs Executive Director Steve Strachan told KCPQ at the time.

However, the state Supreme Court ruled on Aug. 28 that the legislature had not followed proper procedure in amending the citizen-sponsored initiative, and said the original flawed version must be put before voters in November, the Tri-City Herald reported.

The union that represents the Washington’s state troopers released a white paper on Monday that outlined their objections to I-940 very specifically for the electorate.

The document explained, in point-by-point fashion, why the proposed legislation simply will not accomplish its intended goal of reducing violent interactions between law enforcement and the general public.

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The union explained to voters that I-940 would eliminate protections put in place specifically to protect law enforcement officers in a deadly-force encounter.

“Absent these safeguards for law enforcement, it is anticipated that law enforcement may hesitate when called up to respond to dangerous and violent situations that might expose them to a ‘split-second’ deadly force encounter for fear of political prosecution,” the union said.

“Second, this initiative will require that police officers administer medical attention to wounded suspects prior to treating victims or before pursuing a shooter,” the union’s document read.

The union also said that the legislation does not provide any funding for the new training that I-940 will require, and said it will cost “millions of dollars to implement” in already underfunded police agencies.

Comments (22)
No. 1-18
Steve326m
Steve326m

Leave it to the Libtards.

tanksoldier
tanksoldier

If a suspect is so dangerous I had to shoot him, he’s probably too dangerous to approach until backup arrives and the scene is secure.

walkintall
walkintall

Yeah....This sounds like another capital idea. Just capital.....

Milman
Milman

Washington State has been busy trying to emulate California's stupidity! This goes through, your police will leave in droves and their response will be greatly reduced for their own protection. Some of your idiot politicians need to spend a week on night shifts to get the "gist"of what it's really like.

LordSeamus
LordSeamus

Wow...California is setting a standard that other states are trying to match apparently. Maryland, Penn, and now Washington state <not DC> . Sigh

RPG156
RPG156

The law can say what it wants, but officers are going to render aid in this order: Self, other officers, victims/civilians, everyone else, then suspects. The law states that it is written with the assumption that officers intentionally let suspects die to eliminate the witness to their own crime, which is ludicrous. Cops aren't typically paramedics, ER docs or surgeons.... They law presupposes an officer's culpability and prebuilds the case that if the suspect doesn't survive that the officer's attempt to render any aid would be intentionally insufficient.

gdmn2find8
gdmn2find8

And what will happen, when whoever wrote this bill, becomes a victim of a violent crime and is injured or shot. The Police respond, the subject ends up being shot also. They have to take care of the shooter, before the idiot who wrote this bill and the victim may have life threatening injuries? Hey, makes sense to me.

K9ndn
K9ndn

Heck might have to be a better shot I guess? Just kidding. That is a crappy new law.

Snooper
Snooper

Sounds like a total BS bill.. Washingtonians, dont vote FOR this crap!

Dr Shoe
Dr Shoe

There is Definitely something wrong with the Water out there on the "Left" Coast!

IronRick
IronRick

It would be nice if Utah, Nevada & Arizona all had Oceanfront property. When oh when will that big one come?

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Sounds like are trying to address the problem of police officers not providing medical care and medical transport for civilians. That is the problem with having a police vehicle, instead of an ambulance, taking a shot officer to the hospital. As employees of the state, if they do that for some people then they need to do it for everybody. Not sure this bill is the best solution. Also not sure that this article accurately characterizes this bill. Police should attend to wounded people in an order based on medical urgency on not based upon whether the officer likes or dislikes the wounded person(s).

RCK
RCK

Policemen do and should attend to their own before attending to any suspects. They should also transport their own to the hospital if both necessary and possible. To tell a wounded LEO to await an ambulance like 'everybody else' is one of the most absurd comments ever made. The fact is, they are not like everyone else. 'Everyone else' does not risk their life to protect others.

JMK2244
JMK2244

I-940 ~ Hope the people of Washington State see it for what it is...ludicrous!

SICKOFITALL
SICKOFITALL

TREAT THE VICTIMS FIRST WHEN THE OFFICER CAN GET TO THE VICTIM WITHOUT BEING SHOT. THE FELON CAN WAIT FOR AID, DO NOT DO THE CRIME IF YOU CAN NOT DUE THE TIME AND SUFFER THE PAIN. LET THE FELONS LAY THERE UNTIL THE VICTIMS OR OFFICERS ARE TREATED FIRST.

Wtmaster
Wtmaster

VOTE NO on I-940!!!

RogDodger
RogDodger

I am trying to educate my vote here and need some help. This is the exact text from the initiative about aid.

“(2) Within one year after the effective date of this section, the Washington state criminal justice training commission, in consultation with the Washington state patrol, the Washington 4 association of sheriffs and police chiefs, organizations representing state and local law enforcement officers, health providers and/or health policy organizations, tribes, and community stakeholders, shall develop guidelines for implementing the duty to render first aid adopted in this section. The guidelines must: (a) Adopt first aid training requirements; (b) assist agencies and law enforcement officers in balancing competing public health and safety duties; and (c) establish that law enforcement officers have a paramount duty to preserve the life of persons whom the officer comes into direct contact with while carrying out official duties, including providing or facilitating immediate first aid to those in agency care or custody at the earliest opportunity.”

It specifically says that commission will work with various LE agencies to develop details, including “assist agencies and law enforcement officers in balancing competing public health and safety duties”. I don’t see anything here saying LE must prioritize aid for suspects or aid before enforcement and safety. what am I missing that isn’t categorized as someone’s intention? Seems LE will be involved in policy creation.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Looks like this passed. Gonna be some hoppin' mad popo's f'sure if'n it did.

Other Washington state news: Washingtonians passed I-1639 raised the legal age to buy semi-automatic rifles to 21, created a storage law that makes it a felony for gun owners to fail to secure their guns. Sounds like a great opportunity to get lots of search warrants and do lots of dynamic entry raids in the dead of night.