Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has returned a police reform bill back to the state legislature, asking lawmakers to strike out several provisions — including one for a statewide ban on police and public authorities using facial recognition technology, the first of its kind in the United States.
The bill, which also banned police from using rubber bullets and tear gas, was passed on December 1 by both the state’s House and Senate after senior lawmakers overcame months of deadlock to reach a consensus. Lawmakers brought the bill to the state legislature in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man who was killed by a white Minneapolis police officer, later charged with his murder.
Baker said in a letter to lawmakers that he objected to the ban, saying the use of facial recognition helped to convict several criminals, including a child sex offender and a double murderer.
In an interview with The Boston Globe, Baker said that he’s “not going to sign something that is going to ban facial recognition.”
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Source: Tech Crunch