Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich

SPOKANE, Wash. - In light of concerns regarding the new police accountability laws going into effect this Sunday, The Board of Spokane County Commissioners (BSCC) are showing their support for Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich in opposing some of the new bills. 

The bill in question is ESHB 1054, which requires the Sheriff to get approval of the Chair of the Board of County Commissioners before using tear gas during a riot.

“This is yet another example of government overreach by our State Legislature. Our Sheriff is elected by the voters of Spokane County to do a job. Requiring the Sheriff to get approval from the County Commissioners before utilizing techniques to deescalate a dangerous situation is not in the best interest of our community or public safety,” Chair of the Spokane County Board of Commissioners, Josh Kerns said.

Commissioners also worry that the bill gives too much power to the Chair, designating them as the "highest elected official."