Three years ago today, Washington state faced a tragedy when four police officers were shot and killed as they prepared for the day ahead. Investigation later revealed that the individual who murdered the officers was a convicted felon on parole and that relevant information was not effectively transmitted to the proper authorities.
Today, Representatives Adam Smith (WA-09) and Dave Reichert (WA-08) introduced the Department of Justice (DOJ) Global Advisory Committee (GAC) Authorization Act to improve information sharing between all local, state, and federal law enforcement across the country.
“As a former cop and sheriff, I know that the more information law enforcement agents have, the better they can do their jobs,” said Reichert, the former Sheriff of King County who served 33 years in law enforcement. “This bill will improve communication among members of law enforcement and enhance the security of communities across the country. When the lives of cops and citizens are at stake, law enforcement officers must have all available information at their disposal so that they may effectively serve and protect the well-being of those citizens who count on them every day and to safeguard their colleagues."
This legislation would continue to provide technical and financial support for GAC. The bill would also add a new requirement that the Attorney General (AG) issue a report to Congress detailing GAC’s review and their suggestions to improve data interoperability and information sharing policies.
"Information sharing between all levels of law enforcement plays a critical role in keeping our nation safe," Smith said. "This bill can only help move that process forward."
GAC, which consists of over 30 representatives from law enforcement and criminal justice organizations, advises the AG on how to improve best practices and information sharing within the law enforcement community. The committee provides a forum to discuss strategies and potential solutions to keep our communities safe.