Senate Approves Measures to Support Police and Crime Victims

Harrisburg – Taking further action to stem the rise in violent crime in Pennsylvania, the Senate this week passed several measures to support law enforcement and crime victims.

Across the nation, police officers bear an increasingly heavy burden. The Associated Press reported the impact the crime wave has had on police departments already strained by pandemic stress, police protests and Democrats’ soft-on-crime policies.

The Senate approved two bills to stand with police:

House Bill 103 seeks to better protect our law enforcement officers against harassment by strengthening penalties against criminals who intentionally spit on or throw bodily fluids at officers.

House Bill 1546 further protects law enforcement officers by prohibiting the release of public safety official’s home address or telephone number.

While criminal prosecutions punish offenders, restitution for crime victims often falls short. When that happens, victims often turn to the civil justice system.

 The Senate passed House Bill 2525 to make it easier for crime victims to obtain relevant information learned by law enforcement during the investigation of the crime. Crime victims can then use that information in civil legal actions to recover damages for their injuries.

In addition, the Senate approved House Bill 140 to help fight rampant crime in Philadelphia. It requires the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate and prosecute crimes committed within its mass transit system.

Earlier this year, the Senate Majority Policy Committee held two public hearings on crime and public safety to receive input from local police chiefs, prosecutors, human trafficking victim advocates and key community groups. 

These efforts build on the work that has been accomplished over the past two years to protect crime victims, prevent human trafficking and strengthen penalties for criminals who seek to elude officers.