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WBNS-10TV Columbus, Ohio | Columbus News, Weather & Sports |

DeWine says police training needs to be a focus

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine held a press briefing Tuesday to discuss policing and racism.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine normally starts his press briefings talking about COVID-19, but on Tuesday the focus was about addressing the issues facing people of color, how police interact with them, and what can be done so that all Ohioans are treated equally and with dignity.

"Protestors who are expressing outrage over the death of George Floyd that demonstrating is not only understandable but appropriate," he said.

The governor said nearly 60-years since the Civil Rights movement people of color are still facing disparities.

"We still have too many Ohioans living in the shadow of opportunity with racism in our country, there is an inequality in our country. I am the governor for all people for the state of Ohio to defend the defenseless it's my job to bring people together," he said.

How he plans to do that wasn't clear, but he said it's everyone's moral obligation to solve it.

On the issue of policing, he said we need better-trained officers.

"We must make sure that our law enforcement officers are trained in the best de-escalation and proper techniques. We must have best practices by all law enforcement in the state of Ohio. We must improve law enforcement access to training we must continue to enhance transparency between police and the public. We must work to recruit more minorities, and improve more oversight and accountability," he said.

When 10TV asked the governor if he supported citizen review boards for police departments, which are designed to look at police practices, the governor said he wasn't sure about that but he would look into it.

DeWine said it's time the state stops the policy that allows for bad cops to leave one department and go to another. He added a vast majority of the law enforcement to a phenomenal job.