The George Floyd incident and recent riots are pushing Texas lawmakers to increase criminal penalties against protestors in hopes to protect first responders.
The Texas Senate and House are slowly but surely improving the criminal justice system one bill at a time.
New Bills Increase Penalties
The Texas Senate approves House Bill (HB) 2366, making it a 2-10 year sentence for protestors who use laser pointers against police officers.
If a protestor uses a laser pointer against an officer and it causes serious bodily injury, they will be charged with a 1st degree felony (That's 5-99 years in prison!).
Along with laser pointer penalties, HB 2366 bans protestors from shooting fireworks at officers in attempts to interfere with their duties or help suspects flee. Protestors breaking this law will be charged with a 2nd degree felony and can face anywhere from 2-20 years in prison.
Another bill, SB 2212 passed, requires officers to call immediately for medical help when a suspect is injured.
Texas isn't playing around. They are also in the process of approving Senate Bill (SB) 912, which would increase penalties against any protestor who assaults an on-duty first responder during a riot.
SB 68, still waiting for the okay, would mandate officers to intervene when they see other officers using excessive force.
Protestors Blocking Emergency Vehicles
The Texas Senate and House didn't waste any time passing this bill.
HB 9 will charge a minimum 10-day felony jail sentence for any protestor who knowingly blocks an emergency vehicle using lights and sirens or an emergency access point (like a hospital).
"Peaceful protest doesn't include blocking roadways and preventing emergency vehicle access. That chaos will not be tolerated in Texas."Texas Governor Greg Abbott (Tweet on Twitter)
Blocking a road in any other way, aside from what's listed above, is still considered a Misdemeanor and is not covered under HB 9.
Texas Is On Track
Texas is onto a great start, but there is still a lot of work that needs to be done to keep first responders and suspects as safe as possible.
Texas legislators will continue to pass bills in hopes to prevent protestors from dangerously blocking emergency vehicles and endangering first responders.
God bless Texas !!! Thank you for making Texas safer and those that cause harm to officers or First Responders during riots. There should be a way to keep these rioters from been bailing out of jail to go out and commit more crimes. Lastly, these rioters should have to pay for the damages that they caused the public and private sector during the riots .
The sad part here is we need another and special law topinish someone willing and trying to blinds police officer ! How ridiculous is that ?
Hooray Texas, awesome Bravo
It's about time. We can't let rioters go unpunished, Rewarding bad behavior gets more of it.
PEACE MUST come before any justice can be found...an UNPEACEFUL "protest" will only bring more lack of peace...PEACE can handle PEACEFUL PROTESTS but not until the protesters are determined to make their point peaceful...we may HEAR rioters complaints but NOTHING can be correctly fixed with violence...genuine peace can accomplish much more!!! The genuine peace must come from the heart!
Two towns in Idaho had professional anarchists BLM visit. The intended riots never happened. The people met the rioters and were told to NOT start anything. They were not welcomed and to leave town or they would be in a world of hurt.
The politicians, the police were not there. The PEOPLE did the meet and greet.
The anarchists left with no trouble for the town.
Thank you Governor Abbott and the Texas Legislature for these bills. You make us very proud to live in Texas.
GREAT JOB TEXAS...THANK YOU
Good for Texas !!!!!!
My sister and grandmother lived in Texas and I'm glad something is being done
Texas gets it done.
you had better watch if the fire stick will come out again and the democrats will pat them on the back!
If they will just enforce these laws, it could make a big difference in what these so-called "protesters" do. They have gotten away with murder and that only promotes more of the same behavior. Thank you Texas. I hope more states will do the same.
I agree with Texas that laws such as these are NEEDED and should also be ENFORCED! For the most part these are NOT peaceful protests, but plain rioting, looting, and criminal behaviour and those participating in such rioting should be charged.
black lives WON'T matter till all lives matter !!!
Black Lives Matter - - lets STOP the abortion of ALL blacks and other babies!!! More violence is done to blacks in the abortion clinics than anywhere else!!!
Makes me wish I lived in Texas. Good job, Governor Abbott and Texas Legislature. Having laws and enforcing them will decrease crime and it's time to do it. Thank you all!
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