Hillary: ‘We Have To Retrain Our Police Officers’

Alex Pfeiffer | White House Correspondent

Hillary Clinton spent her Sunday in New York campaigning in front of black congregations during which she continued to reiterate her support for retraining police officers.

Clinton has made “police reform” a recurring theme in her bid for the Democratic nomination. She was endorsed Sunday by Nicole Bell, wife of Sean Bell, a man who was killed by the NYPD in 2005. No officers were found guilty of any wrongdoing in the incident.

“Today, I was endorsed by this beautiful young woman, Nicole Bell, whose fiancé was killed by the police right before she was to be married. When I was a Senator, I tried to help. I tried to stand up about what had happened,” the former secretary of state said at the Brown Memorial Baptist Church in Clinton Hill, NY.

Clinton added, “today she wrote an editorial in The Daily News endorsing me and she said we have three common goals, she and I together, we have to end the epidemic of gun violence.”

Bell didn’t write an op-ed Sunday, but in an interview with The New York Daily News she said, “[Hillary’s] against racial profiling. And she wants to make investments to improve training for police officers. Those issues hit home for me and my family.”

Hillary repeated these comments almost verbatim at her church visit saying, “We have to end racial profiling and we have to retrain our police officers so they can do a job that doesn’t require reaching for their gun when it is absolutely unnecessary.”

“And that’s a big difference between me and my opponent, Senator Sanders. He has voted with the National Rifle Association, the big gun lobby, “Clinton added.

“I feel so strongly that when you have 90 people a day dying of gun violence, 33,000 people a year, when gun deaths are the number one cause of death for African American men, more than the next nine causes put together,” she continued.

On Clinton’s website she describes the sort of reforms she wants to enact on policing, all of which require federal government involvement at the local level. The solutions she prescribes are rather vague.

“Hillary will make new investments to ensure law enforcement officials are properly trained on issues like implicit bias, conflict resolution, and use of force so they’re equipped to protect their own safety and the safety of others,” it says on her campaign site.

Regarding racial profiling, her site says she’d support “legislation to end racial profiling.” There are no details as to what that legislation would include. She has in the past supported former attorney general Eric Holder’s police reform efforts.

Holder pushed for Department of Justice data collection and analysis of local police stops and arrests in order to curb the high incarceration rate of black males.

Tags : criminal justice reform elections hillary clinton
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