New bill would end qualified immunity for police officers in Illinois

Local News

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — A bill that would put an end to qualified immunity for police officers is making its way through the Illinois House.

The Bad Apples in Law Enforcement Accountability Act of 2021 would allow for civil litigation against law enforcement officers if they ‘deprive any individual rights guaranteed under the Illinois Constitution.’

Officers who ‘fail to intervene’ could also be held accountable.

Governor Pritzker signed a police reform bill in February that included ending cash bail. The end to qualified immunity was included in an early version of Pritzker’s Illinois police reform bill but was left out.

Several local law enforcement agencies strongly opposed the measure and a petition urging Pritzker to veto the bill garnered more than 150,000 signatures.

Those who oppose the action say the bill prohibits peace officers from fulfilling their sworn oath and duty.

The proposal is currently awaiting a vote on the House floor after passing out committee last week.

The state would have five years to enact the changes, if passed.

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