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Missouri Sen. Brian Williams Pushes For Increased Police Accountability

14th District state Senate candidate Brian Williams speaks to attendees before the start of a candidate forum at Beyond Housing.
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio
Sen. Brian Williams, shown in 2018, is sponsoring legislation to improve police practices.

Sen. Brian Williams is the latest guest on Politically Speaking, where the University City Democrat talked with St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum and Jaclyn Driscoll about his legislation changing some police practices.

Williams represents the 14th Senate District, which takes in St. Louis County municipalities such as Clayton, Normandy, Ferguson and Northwoods. He was elected to his post in 2018.

Here’s what Williams had to say on the show:

  • He talked about his police bill, which among other things would bar police officers from using chokeholds and engaging in sexual activity on the job. It also includes language aimed at keeping police officers with troublesome records from jumping from department to department.
  • Why some aspects of his original proposal, including language curtailing no-knock warrants, didn’t end up in legislation that passed out of a Senate committee.
  • How another proposal removing the residency requirement for the Kansas City Police Department ended up being added to the bill.
  • Lawmakers have been in session about a month, and Williams provided his observations about how the Legislature is operating. Most of the drama has been in the Missouri House, most recently when Gov. Mike Parson issued an angry letter over his State of the State speech being moved.

Williams is a Ferguson native who worked many years for former U.S. Rep. Lacy Clay, D-University City. Among other things, Williams was responsible for communicating with local and state legislative officials on issues that Clay was working on — such as moving the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency to north St. Louis.

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Jaclyn Driscoll on Twitter: @DriscollNPR

Follow Brian Williams on Twitter: @BrianWilliamsMO

Jason is the politics correspondent for St. Louis Public Radio.
Jaclyn is the Jefferson City statehouse reporter for St. Louis Public Radio.