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Seattle judge bans police from using tear gas, chemical weapons at protests through September

The order banning the use of chemical weapons through Sept. 30, does allow police officers to take action and use tear gas if there is a threat to life or safety.

SEATTLE — A U.S. judge Thursday extended the order banning the city of Seattle and the Seattle Police Department from using chemical weapons, such as tear gas, pepper spray and flash-bangs on protesters until Sept. 30, 2020. 

The order also bans other projectiles like pepper balls, blast balls, rubber bullets and foam-tip projectiles.

The order does allow police officers to take action against protesters, including using tear gas, if there is an "imminent" threat to life, safety or destruction of property and other crowd control measures were taken but not effective, according to the court order issued Thursday. 

Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best must also sign off on the use of tear gas or other crowd control measures before they are used, and may only authorize a "limited and targeted use" of tear gas and it must be directed at those causing violence or posing a threat to public safety, the court order said. 

This order was originally put in place on June 12 and was set to expire on June 26, but the judge decided to extend it through September. 

RELATED: Federal judge orders Seattle police to stop using tear gas during protests

The ban on chemical weapons against protesters went into effect following a Black Lives Matter group suing the Seattle Police Department earlier this month. The group said authorities overreacted to recent demonstrations and unleashed the weapons on largely peaceful protests. 

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and Chief Best have apologized. However, Chief Best has said some demonstrators violently targeted police, throwing projectiles and ignoring orders to disperse. 

Last week, the Seattle City Council also voted unanimously to ban police from using chokeholds, as well as tear gas, pepper spray and other crowd control devices.

The council also adopted legislation requiring officers to display badge numbers.

RELATED: Seattle council bans police use of chokeholds and crowd control weapons

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