BOSTON (WHDH) - The Boston City Council voted Wednesday to pass an ordinance that limits the use of chemical crowd control agents and kinetic impact projectiles by law enforcement agents.
The council voted 7 to 5 in favor of the ordinance, which was refiled by Councilors Ricardo Arroyo and Andrea Campbell.
“Though I support an eventual complete ban of tear gas and kinetic impact projectiles. This is an essential first step,” Arroyo said. “These restrictions will protect the residents of Boston from indiscriminate, dangerous, and even fatal impacts of such devices, especially during lawful protests or demonstrations.”
The ordinance states that a Boston police on-scene supervisor at the rank of deputy superintendent or higher must personally witness ongoing violence or property destruction and determine that no reasonable methods of de-escalation will be successful before deploying chemical crowd control agents or kinetic impact projectiles.
The same on-scene supervisor must also give two separate warnings at least two minutes apart to the group that they must disperse, specifying which weapon will be deployed if they fail to leave, and ensure that the group has a way to exit.
In addition, the latest version of the ordinance requires Boston police to maintain, preserve, and produce body camera footage when these weapons are used.
The measure now heads to the mayor’s office and must be signed in order to take effect.
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