Virginia governor signs criminal justice and police reforms

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Gov. Ralph Northam has signed more than a dozen criminal justice and police reform laws.

The bills signed Wednesday by Northam include a ban on no-knock search warrants, limitations on the use of neck restraints and changes that make it easier to decertify police officers for misconduct.

The legislation was approved by the Democrat-controlled General Assembly during a special legislative session called after nationwide protests over police brutality and racial inequality that followed the killing of George Floyd while in police custody in Minnesota.

Other bills signed by Northam allow inmates to earn increased sentencing credits and some terminally ill inmates to petition the Parole Board for conditional release.

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