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Day after Chauvin verdict, Cox ceremonially signs 12 police reform bills into law



One day after guilty verdicts were handed down in the Derek Chauvin trial in Minneapolis, Utah Gov. Spencer Cox ceremonially signed 12 law enforcement-related bills into law.

Speaking outside the Peace Officer Standards and Training Facility at Salt Lake Community College in Sandy Wednesday morning, Cox said the event had been planned for weeks, but he felt it was “fortuitous” that it took place the day after Chauvin, a former police officer, was found guilty of murdering George Floyd last May. In his opening remarks, Cox tried to bridge the divide between various sides on that issue.

I say this unequivocally, you can be both pro-police and anti-murder,” said Cox. “You don’t have to choose between those two things.”

Cox said he knows there are some who feel the Utah Legislature went too far on police reform this session, while others feel lawmakers didn’t go far enough.

“What we try to do here in Utah, what we try to do is to always be better, to learn from our past mistakes, and to improve. That’s not a Democrat thing, that’s not a Republican thing, that’s not a pro-cop thing, that’s not a pro-immigrant thing,” said Cox.

The bills signed into law focus on a number of issues including de-escalation and mental health awareness training for police, reporting data on use-of-force incidents and times when officers draw a weapon, setting minimum standards for using force, and preventing officers from using force on someone who is suicidal.

Many of the bills’ sponsors attended Wednesday’s event and spoke about the collaborative process in putting them together. The governor said the pieces of legislation were examples of Utah leading the way in tackling a difficult issue.

“These bills were sponsored and passed by Republicans and Democrats together,” said Cox. “Law enforcement and community partners came together to find better ways to do things.”

The bills Cox ceremonially signed Wednesday are as follows:

  • HB22 – Medical Examiner Amendments
  • HB62 – POST Certification Amendments
  • HB67 – Juvenile Sentencing Amendments
  • HB84 – Use of Force Reporting Requirements
  • HB162 – Peace Officer Training Amendments
  • HB237 – Lethal Force Amendments
  • HB264 – Law Enforcement Weapons Use Amendments
  • HB334 – Special Needs Training for Law Enforcement
  • HB345 – School Resource Officer Amendments
  • SB13 – Law Enforcement Internal Investigation Requirements
  • SB106 – Use of Force Amendments
  • SB159 – Law Enforcement Data Management Requirements