Senate To Vote On How Law Enforcement Can Use Seized Property | WABE 90.1 FM

Senate To Vote On How Law Enforcement Can Use Seized Property

Mar 31, 2015

State lawmakers are looking to change how law enforcement agencies can use the proceeds from property they seize.
Credit David Goldman / Associated Press

State lawmakers are looking to change how law enforcement agencies can use the proceeds from property they seize.

A coalition of groups, including the ACLU, have pushed for more transparency in the process known as civil forfeiture, when law enforcement seizes your property without charging someone with a crime.

Critics say the process has led to what they call for “policing for profit.”

House Representative Alex Atwood, R-St. Simons Island, hopes to change that with a bill he’s sponsoring.

“It standardizes the procedure to be used in all our forfeiture cases,” Atwood said. “[There has been] some abuse, at least, over the last few years that we wanted to try to correct.”  

The bill requires departments to disclose what they spend their money on and use it only for official law enforcement purposes.

The Senate is scheduled to vote on the bill this week.