MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The Alabama Senate has voted to track how often law enforcement authorities use civil actions to seize a person’s property when the person hasn’t been convicted of a crime.
Senators on Wednesday voted 25-1 for the bill. It now moves to the Alabama House of Representatives.
Civil asset forfeiture is the practice of law enforcement seizing property through a civil action for suspected criminal activity. Republican Sen. Arthur Orr had originally sought to require a criminal conviction for property seizures.
Advocates argued the practice was abused and government should not take a person’s property without a criminal conviction.
The revamped bill tracks cases instead of banning or altering the practice. Prosecutors and law enforcement authorities argued the civil seizures are a valuable crime-fighting tool and people had due process.