Judge blocks Seattle law banning police use of pepper spray

SEATTLE (AP) — A federal judge late Friday blocked Seattle’s new law prohibiting police from using pepper spray, blast balls and similar weapons that was passed following confrontations with protesters. The Seattle Times reports that U.S. District Judge James Robart at an emergency hearing late Friday granted a request from the federal government to block the new law, which the Seattle City Council passed unanimously last month. The U.S. Department of Justice, citing Seattle’s longstanding police consent decree, argued that banning the use of crowd control weapons could actually lead to more police use of force, leaving them only with more deadly weapons.