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Indybay Feature
Sun Oct 2 2016 (Updated 10/04/16)
Police Asset Seizure to Require Convictions in Most Cases
Historic California Law to Rein in Asset Forfeiture Abuse, Paving Way for Other States
While previous attempts to reign in police seizures have failed in the California legislature, state lawmakers approved Senate Bill 443 in August with bipartisan support. On September 29, the bill limiting civil asset forfeiture abuse in California was signed into law, marking a victory for the larger asset forfeiture reform movement underway throughout the country. The new law will go into effect January 1, 2017.

SB 443, championed by Senator Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) and Assemblymember David Hadley (R-Torrance), strengthens state protections by requiring a conviction in most cases before state and local law enforcement agencies may permanently keep people’s property. This conviction requirement addresses a gap in the law that currently allows state and local law enforcement agencies to bypass state law in favor of federal law, a practice that opens the door to abuse.

Bill to limit property seizures by cops heads to Governor | Historic Law to Rein in Asset Forfeiture Abuse, Paving Way for Other States
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