FORT WORTH, Texas - Activists in Fort Worth want to see change within the police department, but one attorney says some of the demands may not be within reach.
On the heels of protests directed at Fort Worth city leaders, the group Enough Is Enough issued 13 detailed demands. The city plans on responding early next week.
Attorney Trent Loftin is not involved in the process, but has some perspective on several of them.
Regarding a requested ban on police carrying out no-knock warrants, Loftin is skeptical.
“Think if there is a bunch of drugs in there too, if you knock and say, ‘Police here,’ could that evidence be destroyed or if there are weapons, an arsenal of machine guns and you were trying to arrest them, what kind of safety would happen.”
The city’s draft response describes such a ban as “legally permissible,” however Loftin says a ban might be pointless since there are other agencies to consider.
“Am I going to let the sheriff’s department run this warrant or the Department of Public Safety or the Texas Rangers or the FBI?” Loftin said. “So you can get the no knock warrant, there’s different caveats or loopholes to go around it.”
Another demand is banning lethal force when a suspect is fleeing on foot. Loftin summarizes the city’s position in its draft response:
“Does the individual pose eminent danger to you, and that’s a different standard. Right now the officer is held to a lower standard. That would be something that has to be taken up at the state level or federal level,” Loftin said. “Because every situation is different.”
A third demand, Loftin says will get significant attention -- officers intervening when they witness another officer’s misconduct.
“If somebody is seeing, if an officer on the scene is seeing something is wrong he knows is wrong, right now the courts have said they can be held liable if they don’t intervene,” Loftin said.
The draft response obtained by FOX4 is by no means the final word.
The city in a statement says it will respond to each demand “… in a detailed presentation … before the city council on Tuesday (6/23) at the 3pm work session.”
The city says it’s also evaluating concerns raised by a separate group of protesters, United My Justice.