-dea how to do it.
Tried this elsewhere, but it didn't work. Please let's not talk politics and social/race issues here - this is a genuine attempt by me to try and help. Nothing more.
First off, this is not exclusive to the George Floyd situation; it can apply to many. The first other one that comes to mind is Eric Garner.
Second, I am sure that others elsewhere (maybe here?) have thought about this, and talked about it, so I am certainly not looking to take credit where credit is not due. But, TBH, I have not heard/seen this convo anywhere.
I have an answer to a part of this problem... it's not the be all end all that will solve everything, but had this been done a long time ago, both Garner and Floyd would still be alive. As well as many others.
It centers around turning these low-level, petty offenses that pose no great danger to society, from arrestable offenses into payable offenses.
Let's assume that Floyd was in fact knowingly and willingly passing a counterfeit $20 bill. I don't want to convict him here, as I do not know what happened, but for the sake of having a discussion, let's assume that he did. Does that really need to be an arrestable offense? Why not write him a summons? Does Garner, who was illegally selling cigarettes on the street really need to be hauled off to jail? Why not write him a summons? If I blow a stop sign or get caught speeding on the hwy, I don't get arrested. I get a summons. Ok, if I am going WAY over the limit, yes I get arrested. But if I am doing 78 in a 55, I don't get hauled off to jail. What's more dangereous? Who is more of a threat to society? Me, by speeding/blowing a stop sign, or the other guy who is knowingly and willingly passing a counterfeit $20? I am. But I get a fine, while the other guy gets arrested. How does that make sense?
In most of these cases, the officers do not have the option of writing a summons - b/c the crime they are responding to is an arrestable offense. This needs to be fixed. And it can be fixed.
The question is, how can someone like myself go about this? Should I write letters to the state legislatures of all 50 states, asking for this? Something tells me I wouldn't get very far. Is there a proper way to petition the legislatures? Should I hire an atty? I dont mind putting some of my own money towards this, but hiring 50 attys is in no way possible.
Anyone have any ideas here?