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Virginia Senate Committee kills bill that would end qualified immunity for police

Posted at 5:34 PM, Sep 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-10 18:27:26-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia's Senate Judiciary Committee has killed a bill that would have ended qualified immunity protection for police officers.

The legislation aimed at making it easier to sue police officers for misconduct in Virginia was revived for a second time Tuesday and approved by the state House of Delegates.

While the bill is now dead, it will be sent to a joint committee for further study

The bill sponsored by Del. Jeff Bourne, D-Richmond, would have allowed lawsuits by people who claim police have violated their constitutional rights to move forward in state court, ending the qualified immunity that often protects police from liability. The legislation had been killed once in committee and once on the House floor before winning approval by the House on Tuesday.

House Republicans had argued that the legislation would make it more difficult to recruit police officers because it would expose them to civil liability for doing their jobs.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.