Senators John Rafferty (R-44), Randy Vulakovich (R-38), Don White (R-41), Mike Regan (R-31), Dan Laughlin (R-49) and Wayne Langerholc, Jr. (R-35) joined legislators and representatives of law enforcement organizations at a Capitol news conference to show their support for Pennsylvania’s police officers.
They outlined legislation they are sponsoring to assist them in doing their jobs safely and effectively.
The senators said that the legislation is crucial to protect police who have increasingly become the target of public abuse and violence simply because they are carrying out their mission to preserve public safety.
In addition, Rafferty again called on the Governor to lift his moratorium on the death penalty, citing the recent conviction of Eric Frein for murdering a state trooper and injuring another.
“We have seen a surge in anti-police sentiment recently, putting officers at even greater danger for retribution and violence,” Rafferty said. “These men and women proudly wear the badge and face danger on the job every day – they deserve our support, our respect and our help in keeping communities safe.”
Among the bills outlined in the news conference are measures to:
- Prohibit police departments from releasing to the public the names of officers who discharge a firearm or use force as part of their official duties while an investigation is pending.
- Create the new offense of “Hate Crimes Against Law Enforcement and First Responders.”
- Create a new offense of “Evading Arrest or Detention by Foot.”
- Permit all municipal police to utilize radar for speed enforcement.
“As someone who has the utmost respect for our law enforcement officials, I find it unfortunate that there is a growing ‘anti-cop’ mentality in many of our communities that is posing a real danger to police officers,” Rafferty said. “This legislation would help to ensure that officers have more tools to do their jobs safely.
CONTACT: Senate Republican Communications 717-787-6725