This statement is attributable to Haneef Salaam, ACLU-DE's Campaign for Smart Justice Manager.
"Nearly two years ago, in the wake of the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, our lawmakers promised us that they would work to increase transparency and accountability for law enforcement in Delaware. Advocates and police reform experts have been clear from the beginning that meaningful policy change must come by significantly amending Delaware’s Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights (LEOBOR).
Today, in the wake of Rodney K. Robinson II being killed by a Dewey Beach police officer — just the most recent in a long line of Delaware police-involved shootings — lawmakers introduced a substitute bill for SB 149 that breaks their own promises.
"We adamantly oppose the SB 149 substitute bill... This bill falls far short of what constituents have asked for – it only provides a mirage of transparency and accountability, which is almost worse than nothing at all."
We adamantly oppose the SB 149 substitute bill. We did not come to this decision lightly; however, the new version of the bill takes community oversight out of the hands of the community by creating just one statewide oversight board that is overseen by the state’s top law enforcement official, leaving local boards without any meaningful oversight power. The substitute bill continues to keep police disciplinary records shrouded in secrecy by offering only a small number of records for public access, with far too many exceptions to be meaningful.
This substitute bill doesn’t reform LEOBOR. It’s a disappointment to community members and advocates who have been working in good faith to increase police transparency and accountability over the last two years. This bill falls far short of what constituents have asked for – it only provides a mirage of transparency and accountability, which is almost worse than nothing at all. This isn’t a compromise; it’s a travesty.”