New York county lawmakers pass contentious bill allowing police to sue protesters for harassment


County lawmakers in New York accredited a invoice Monday permitting law enforcement officials and different first responders to sue individuals who harass them due to their career.

The invoice, which handed the Nassau County legislature in a 12-6 vote, nonetheless wants the signature of county government Laura Curran.

The vote got here after hours of often-heated public feedback, together with from police union officers and NAACP members.

Tracey Edwards, the NAACP’s regional director, stated that law enforcement officials can already arrest individuals who harass them. And she or he stated the invoice “disrespected” actions that had fought in opposition to discrimination.

“What you’re doing with this invoice is you take this career and you’re placing that chosen career above all of these individuals who fought throughout the Civil Rights motion,” she stated.

Studying from the invoice’s textual content, Brian Sullivan, president of Nassau County Correction Officers Benevolent Affiliation, stated the regulation was vital due to a “widespread sample of bodily assaults and intimidation directed on the police.”

However neither union officers nor the legislative textual content cite particular examples from Nassau County, which is exterior New York Metropolis on Lengthy Island.

Critics of the proposed regulation stated it was pointless and poorly drafted and will have a chilling impact on protesters’ First Modification rights.

One commenter argued that the invoice’s lack of detailed definitions of harassment, menacing and different conduct would give officers an excessive amount of energy to pursue a lawsuit. That commenter cited as a hypothetical that below the proposed provisions, Derek Chauvin, who was convicted of George Floyd’s murder, would be capable of sue bystanders who yelled at him as he pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck.

In keeping with the legislative textual content, officers can pursue civil penalties of $25,000 per violation or a complete of $50,000 if these violations occurred throughout a riot.

A spokeswoman for Curran didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark, however she informed News 12 that she would search a overview of the laws from the state lawyer basic. | New York county lawmakers go contentious invoice permitting police to sue protesters for harassment


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