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Florida Lawmaker Proposes Bill Targeting Strangulation By Police Officers

San Diego, California. June 1st, 2020. San Diego City College Students organized a pacific protest for justice on the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020.
George Floyd's death while in police custody sparked "Black Lives Matter" protests nationwide.

About eight months after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis touched off nationwide protests, a Florida state senator has filed a bill that targets strangulation by police officers.

The bill (SB 730), filed Friday by Sen. Randolph Bracy, D-Orlando, could lead to officers facing third-degree felony charges if they strangle people under certain circumstances.

“A law enforcement officer commits the offense of strangulation by a law enforcement officer if while on duty the officer knowingly and intentionally impedes the normal breathing or circulation of the blood of an individual so as to create a risk of or cause great bodily harm or death by applying pressure on the throat or neck of the individual or by blocking the nose or mouth of the individual, including the use of a chokehold or similar restraint,” said the bill, filed for consideration during the legislative session that starts March 2.

Floyd, a Black man, died in May after a police officer kneeled on his neck during an arrest, preventing him from breathing.