On Tuesday, June 16, 2020, the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) issued a special order implementing further requirements and approval levels when officers are seeking to execute a “no-knock” warrant.
"We will continue to listen to our community in the spirit of building trust and reducing the overall use of force," said Police Chief Robert Luna. "No-knock warrants are useful in certain situations; however, they can be inherently dangerous for our officers, as well as community members. By requiring multi-level approvals, we will ensure training, policies, and procedures are being properly followed and enhance the safety for all of those involved."
California Penal Code, Section 844 requires police officers to give "knock notice" prior to forcing entry to serve a search warrant. The courts have long held that there may be articulable facts which lead an officer to seek judicial approval to suspend the "knock notice" requirement. While this process still exits, the LBPD is seeking to standardize and track when such requests are made.
Officers will now be required to seek approval from a supervisor of the rank of Deputy Chief, before seeking judicial approval to serve a “no-knock” warrant.
The special order highlighting this change can be found here.