Governor calls for changes in Officer-Involved Shooting investigations

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DENVER — It wasn’t one of the dozens of first bills to be introduced, but legislation changing the way officer-involved shootings are handled in Colorado will be introduced during this session, FOX21 News is told.

“I think there does need to be a change,” said Governor Jared Polis.

Polis called for an independent investigation after Colorado Springs Police shot and killed De’Von Bailey in August 2019.

The investigation was instead conducted by the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office, per policy established between the two agencies and in accordance with current state law.

A Grand Jury eventually cleared the two officers involved and they were back on patrol weeks before that ruling.

The process came to the ire of people who lived in the southeast community in Colorado Springs who thought the process should be more transparent.

“We need a process that has the confidence of law enforcement professionals, of the general public, of the victims and I think, as we’ve seen with the dialogue in Colorado Springs, not everyone currently has confidence in that process,” said Polis.

Polis didn’t disclose specific changes he’d like to see but underscores the need to balance the different perspectives.

“We’re very open to working with Republicans and Democrats in the legislature to figure out a way where the general public can have full confidence in this process, that it’s fair to our men and women in blue that they don’t have their reputations unfairly tarnished and that we have a process going forward for these high-profile cases,” Polis said.

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