Washington, October 29
Democratic vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris has sought the creation of a national registry of police officers with records of misconduct, amidst the ongoing protest following the shooting of a black man by police officers in Philadelphia earlier this week.
Police said Walter Wallace Jr, 27, was wielding a knife and ignored orders to drop the weapon before officers fired shots Monday afternoon. But his parents said that officers knew their son was in a mental health crisis.
Responding to a question over the issue after her rallies in Arizona on Wednesday, Harris said she has discussed and supports creating a national registry of police officers with records of misconduct.
Harris, 56, also called for creating national standards on use of force, decriminalising marijuana and expunging the criminal records of people convicted of marijuana offences, according to a report.
The death of Wallace has triggered protests after the incident.
About 500 people had gathered at a West Philadelphia park Tuesday night and began marching through the neighbourhood, chanting. There were sporadic reports of arrests in other areas.
Answering further to questions on the protests against police brutality and particularly the killing of Wallace and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s call for a new commission on policing, Harris said that it is not another commission.
“Part of the reason that people are marching in the streets is that there has not been the level of attention, especially recently over the last few years, that is necessary from the president of the United States. And Joe’s committed to that,” she said.
On Friday, Harris is scheduled to travel to Texas, making her the first Democratic vice-presidential nominee in decades to campaign during elections.
“We’re talking to people everywhere and there’s no area that’s off limits because people in all these areas have so much at stake in this election,” she said.
Harris met with a group of a couple dozen Black community leaders at The Van Buren, a music venue in downtown Phoenix. PTI