In the 2021 Legislative Session, the State of Washington passed many bills that change policing in cities like Sumner. At the June 28 Council Study Session, Chief Moericke provided an overview of these changes and how they affect Sumner Police. You can watch his briefing on YouTube.
It is not brief, however, because these changes are quite extensive and nuanced. Trying to simplify them too much would be misleading. However, in general, they change when officers may use force and how; when we may pursue a vehicle; how we must record interrogations; when we may talk to a juvenile; the rules around drug paraphernalia and possession of a controlled substance. There are also laws changing the reporting of use of force; oversight of incidents and when an officer may be decertified as a peace officer and more.
The Sumner Police Department is here to serve you, and we believe in reforms that continue to help us set the standard of excellence in policing. Unfortunately, many of these new laws create more questions than answers at this time. We will continue to follow their development and will make the required investment in infrastructure. What will not change is that the Sumner Police Department remains here to serve you.