Gov. Gavin Newsom just made it legal for anyone in the state of California to refuse to help a police officer requesting assistance.
The California Democrat on Tuesday signed into law a bill that struck down a more than century-old law which required any “able-bodied person 18 years of age or older” to assist a police officer who requested help during an arrest, The Sacramento Bee reported.
Sen. Bob Hertzberg, who sponsored Senate Bill 192, said the old law was “a vestige of a bygone era” that subjected citizens to “an untenable moral dilemma.”
The California Posse Comitatus Act of 1872 was used to help catch runaway slaves and made it a misdemeanor to refuse an officer’s request for assistance. Hertzberg, a Los Angeles Democrat, proposed repealing the law after he asked his staff to “take a look into bills that were still on the books that were antiquated or no longer needed,” his press secretary Katie Hanzlik told The Sacramento Bee back in February.