The Cook County Board of Commissioners recently passed an ordinance banning the use of choke holds by the Cook County Hospital police. The measure was introduced by 1st District Commissioner Richard R. Boykin.

“I introduced this measure because I believe strongly that recent events in other major American metropolitan areas compelled our county to act on this issue,” Boykin said in a statement, which referenced the 2014 choking death of Eric Garner in New York City and the 2015 choking death of Floyd Dent in Detroit—both men were killed by law enforcement officers. 

“The current professional consensus in state and federal law enforcement circles is that choke holds by police officers typically cause more danger than they prevent,” Commissioner Boykin said. “In fact, what more often happens is that the choke hold causes the subject of a restraint to panic. And out of panic, a subject will usually react by resisting even further, which intensifies the struggle and can lead to tragic results.”

“A similar ordinance banning the use of choke holds by Chicago police officers was introduced in the Chicago City Council by Alderman Ed Burke. In the Illinois General Assembly, five separate bills have been introduced that each attempt to regulate or ban the use of choke holds by law enforcement personnel,” according to Boykin’s statement.