Latest from The Spokesman-Review
Gov. Jay Inslee and Sen. Mike Padden talk before the autopsy bill is signed.
OLYMPIA – Spokane County’s medical examiners should feel free to talk about the results of investigations into deaths that involve actions by law enforcement officers. Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill Monday allowing county medical examiners and coroners to discuss the results of autopsies and post mortems of people who die in encounters with police or while in jail.
To read the rest of this item, or to comment, continue inside the blog.
OLYMPIA – Spokane County’s medical examiners may soon have no legal barrier that stops them from talking about the results of investigations into deaths that involve actions by law enforcement officers.
A unanimous Senate Tuesday passed a bill allowing them to discuss the results of autopsies and post mortems of people who die in encounters with police or while in jail. A unanimous House passed the same bill last week, and it’s headed to Gov. Jay Inslee’s desk.
To emphasize that such comments will be permissible, sponsor Mike Padden, the Spokane Valley Republican who heads the Senate Law and Justice Committee, engaged in a bit of rehearsed dialogue with the panel’s top Democrat, Adam Kline of Seattle, before the vote. . .
OLYMPIA – Medical examiners would be able to discuss the results of autopsies in case involving police shootings, giving them a chance to clear up what Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich refers to as “misinformation and myths” in some controversial cases, under a bill being considered by the Senate.
The proposal, sponsored by Sen. Mike Padden, R-Spokane Valley, is designed to lift some confidentiality restrictions on autopsy reports when a death occurs in the custody of a law enforcement officer or during police contact.
Confidentiality restrictions, which under state law cover most autopsy and post-mortem investigation reports, also would be lifted for deaths that occur in a prison or jail.
If the proposed law were in effect, Knezovich said he’d be able to explain details of cases like the Sept. 5 death of Edward Gover . . .
To read the rest of this item, or to comment, go inside the blog.
OLYMPIA — The House of Representatives has a bit of housekeeping to take care of this morning, specifically some rules for how they do business.
Minority Republicans have proposed four rule changes, including one that would require a two-thirds majority vote on tax measures should the state Supreme Court rule that the super-majority required by initiative is unconstitutional. At a press conference earlier this week, GOP leaders from both chambers said they were preparing for that possibility.
Another rule change would give every member at least one hearing on one bill, thus allowing minority members a chance to get a public airing of at least one of their ideas.
Elsewhere around the Capitol campus, hearings started early this morning because some legislators will be getting the heck outta Dodge early this afternoon for the weekend. The Senate Law and Justice Committee aired out a proposal that Spokane County officials are watching, which would open up information from medical examiner investigations into officer-involved shootings.
The state's county officials association has some problems with the wording, but suggested a fix that would keep it's members happy. We'll have more on that topic later today.
For a complete list of today's hearings, go inside the blog.