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Crowd-control measure pulled from Council agenda

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Crowd-control measure pulled from Council agenda

A proposed city ordinance that would have increased police powers in crowd control situations — and would have outlawed wearing masks at demonstrations — has been pulled from the agenda of Tuesday's Tucson City Council meeting for further consideration.

The measure, which may be brought before the Council at a future meeting, would give the chief of police the power to declare a "Crowd Management Event" and restrict access to areas where authorities believe there may be a risk to public or private property, or to those participating.

The law would also prohibit wearing a mask at events declared by the police to fall under the law. It would also bar using a drone at such events, crossing a police line, and wearing gas masks or other protective gear.

"After discussing with the Chief (Roberto Villaseñor), we are going to ask that this item be pulled from the agenda so that we can examine various operational and legal issues, and bring the item back at some point in the future as appropriate after those issues are addressed," City Attorney Mike Rankin said in an email to Mayor Jonathan Rothschild and members of the Council on Monday afternoon.

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