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State Lawmaker Wants Racially Motivated 911 Calls to Be Hate Crimes
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By Jim Jakobs, Digital Producer
Published 4 years ago on
June 19, 2020

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Seeking to prevent what he calls the weaponization law enforcement against communities of color, Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) is pushing new legislation.

Bonta’s goal is to end discriminatory 911 calls motivated by an individual’s race, religion, sex, or any other protected class by designating such reports as a hate crime.

“If you are afraid of a black family barbecuing in the community park, a man dancing and doing his normal exercise routine in the bike lane, or someone who asks you to comply with dog leash laws in a park, and your immediate response is to call the police, the real problem is with your own personal prejudice.” — Rob Bonta, Assemblymember, D-Oakland 

False Police Reports

Under California law, it’s a criminal misdemeanor to make false police reports.

However, according to Bonta, the law does not include accountability measures to address discrimination if a person summons law enforcement because they perceive another individual to be a threat due to their race, religion, outward appearance, or inclusion in a protected class.

“Racism and discrimination of any form is morally repugnant. California must continue to reassert its commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equity,” said Bonta. “But those principles are being undermined by the persistent and, often fatal, presence of systemic and institutionalized racism, personal prejudice, and implicit bias in our society.”

https://www.facebook.com/RobBontaCA/posts/3210422305708933?__xts__%5B0%5D=68.ARCBvQ5g3t5GpA6XAOdvdDOiPGAEVmtpgbjEbHPumzh2zXuZPY0J2Jb29M7UPqYq8R5oSLVj4rJqgvEd3cdfGaF337RCwOxamnwPP0qxixEMwcd58LtKj9QqXEfRAF9DwPecU-1O9V3jUc_HORkpuoq_IbeChiCPkg1FK0w3pKgBTGFVgEjo8B8md1i4A-O1rZjBp6YWU_B34o5rFMf8IoaLtggCs2PPlSAuJ_pWYWMuNB4P6dWjGNidNjze7cqT-R–MBhbsGkXtx22acBh4759SmNEjuaZK6JKbNjLsASlDUbl4mYsGFlGr4TggpAl3beadsxCMrx94p1-RG30Q_fVlQ&__tn__=-R

Assembly Bill 1550

AB 1550, when amended, will impose serious consequences on those who make 911 calls that are motivated by hate and bigotry.

Bonta says, “If you are afraid of a black family barbecuing in the community park, a man dancing and doing his normal exercise routine in the bike lane, or someone who asks you to comply with dog leash laws in a park, and your immediate response is to call the police, the real problem is with your own personal prejudice.”

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