by WorldTribune Staff, August 16, 2020
A socialist member of Denver’s City Council is proposing replacing the city’s police department with a “peace force” in which most personnel would not have arrest power or carry firearms, a report said.
Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, said the “peace force” would seek to prevent crime by taking a “holistic, anti-racist, public health-oriented approach,” Valerie Richardson reported for The Washington Times on Friday.
CdeBaca proposed making creation of the “peace force” a ballot measure, which if approved by the City Council would go before the voters in November.
“This department will specifically subsume the current Police Department but will also subsume all relevant functions of existing departments that more properly should be under the Department of Peace Services,” the proposed measure said.
Peace officers would be permitted to use force “only as a last and least favored resort,” and have no immunity from prosecution “unless it can be shown by clear and convincing evidence that the action was necessary for immediate self-defense and/or the immediate defense of another person.”
“To underscore this, most officers in the Peacekeeping service will not have arrest powers or be licensed to bear or use arms as part of their duties,” the proposal said.
Black Lives Matter activists have called for Denver to defund the police. Mayor Michael Hancock has expressed support for improving officer accountability but has not sought to slash funding to the department.
CdeBaca credited BLM rioters who have called for defunding the police with helping her develop the proposal.
“As much as I want to claim credit for this, it was not all me,” CdeBaca told Denverite. “This was all of them with my advice.”