Florida Senate - 2021                                     SB 458
       By Senator Bracy
       11-00066-21                                            2021458__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the use of force by law enforcement
    3         officers; amending s. 776.05, F.S.; requiring that a
    4         court, in a case involving the use of force by a law
    5         enforcement officer in making an arrest, make a
    6         finding regarding the reasonableness of the officer’s
    7         actions; requiring that the court consider certain
    8         factors in determining whether the use of force was
    9         justifiable; providing an effective date.
   11  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   13         Section 1. Section 776.05, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   14  read:
   15         776.05 Law enforcement officers; use of force in making an
   16  arrest.—
   17         (1) A law enforcement officer, or any person whom the
   18  officer has summoned or directed to assist him or her, need not
   19  retreat or desist from efforts to make a lawful arrest because
   20  of resistance or threatened resistance to the arrest. The
   21  officer is justified in the use of any force:
   22         (a)(1) Which he or she reasonably believes to be necessary
   23  to defend himself or herself or another from bodily harm while
   24  making the arrest;
   25         (b)(2) When necessarily committed in retaking felons who
   26  have escaped; or
   27         (c)(3) When necessarily committed in arresting felons
   28  fleeing from justice. However, this paragraph does subsection
   29  shall not constitute a defense in any civil action for damages
   30  brought for the wrongful use of deadly force unless the use of
   31  deadly force was necessary to prevent the arrest from being
   32  defeated by such flight and, when feasible, some warning had
   33  been given, and:
   34         1.(a) The officer reasonably believes that the fleeing
   35  felon poses a threat of death or serious physical harm to the
   36  officer or others; or
   37         2.(b) The officer reasonably believes that the fleeing
   38  felon has committed a crime involving the infliction or
   39  threatened infliction of serious physical harm to another
   40  person.
   41         (2) If an officer is criminally charged with an offense in
   42  connection with using force in making an arrest, the court must
   43  find, and the court must instruct the jury accordingly, that the
   44  officer’s actions were reasonable under the totality of the
   45  circumstances in determining that the officer was justified in
   46  using force as authorized under subsection (1). In making that
   47  determination, the court must consider whether the officer
   48  engaged in de-escalation measures before using force and whether
   49  the officer’s conduct before using force increased the risk that
   50  force would be used.
   51         Section 2. This act shall take effect October 1, 2021.