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Stefanowski doubles down on pledge to bring back qualified immunity for police

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Ebong Udoma
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Connecticut Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski and running mate Laura Devlin receive the endorsement of the Bridgeport local police union on Friday, October 28, 2022

Connecticut’s Republican gubernatorial candidate, Bob Stefanowski, has doubled down on his pledge to reverse the state’s two-year old police accountability law, if elected governor..

“When we win this election, we are going to bring back qualified immunity. That’s number one. We are going to bring back consent searches, which allow these men and women to do their job. And we are going to bring back and look at the use of force standard,” said Stefanoski.

He made the pledge after he and his running mate Laura Devlin received the endorsement of the Bridgeport, Connecticut police union in front of the department’s headquarters.

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The state’s police accountability law passed in the aftermath of the George Floyd killing removed qualified immunity for police officers. That’s increased crime in the state, said Stefanowski.

“We are in a situation right now, where the police need to almost wait for the criminal to shoot before they do anything,” he said. “You combine that with limited liability, it is a dangerous combination. That's why crime is up throughout the state.”

The Republican said that’s why he’s got the endorsement of a number of local police unions.

When the law passed a couple of years ago, the state police union voted no confidence in incumbent Democratic Governor Ned Lamont.

The gubernatorial candidates will face-off in their final televised debate on Tuesday, a week before Election Day on Nov 8.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.