Jones bill would create hate crime for targeting public safety personnel

Sen. Rick Jones

Sen. Rick Jones

LANSING, Mich. — People who attack a police officer, firefighter or EMT would be guilty of a hate crime under legislation introduced by Sen. Rick Jones.

“Assault and hatred against police officers is on the rise nationally, which is both alarming and dangerous for the safety of our communities,” said Jones, R-Grand Ledge. “It is time that we take a stand for our public safety officers and first responders and defend these brave men and women who put their lives on the line to protect all of us.”

Under Senate Bills 127 and 128, a person who commits, or attempts to commit, a felony in which the victim is targeted because they are a police officer, firefighter or an emergency medical services personnel would be found guilty of a felony punishable by up to two years in prison, to be served consecutively to any other term of imprisonment.

“The vast majority of our police officers are good and honorable public servants,” Jones said. “I am against hate, and anyone who targets a law enforcement officer solely because they hate the police deserves to do an extra two years of prison time.”

SBs 127 and 128 have been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration.