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Robert De Niro signs petition calling for California police reforms

US actor Robert De Niro and other entertainers back police reform legislation in California.

Hollywood actor Robert De Niro and hundreds of entertainers have signed a letter backing police reform legislation in the US state of California.

They supported the reform after nationwide protests rocked the country over the death of the African-American man George Floyd at the hands of a white US police officer.

The letter calls on the governor and state legislature to approve two bills addressing police accountability.

“While the killing of George Floyd inspired sustained outrage, protests, and reporting, the people of California have long understood the need to properly address the actions and accountability of police,” the letter, released Wednesday, read.

“For too long, courts have undermined the intent of the State’s laws, allowing bad police officers to violate the rights of those they are meant to protect. In addition, a lack of transparency and a deficient recordation system has shielded officers who abuse their authority and tarnish the integrity of California’s law enforcement. We can fix this,” it added.

Floyd died at the hands of the police in Minneapolis on May 25 after a white police officer pinned him to the ground and pressed his knee to his neck for several minutes.

The letter from the music, entertainment and sport industries was also signed by a number of companies and organizations, including Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group and Sony Music Group as well as the Screen Actors Guild and the Actors’ Equity Association.