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Thread: GOVERNOR RENDELL ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR BILL TO CURB GUN VIOLENCE TARGETING LAW ENFORCEMENT

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    http://www.state.pa.us/papower/cwp/v...69150&A=11

    Governor Edward G. Rendell today joined Pennsylvania House Speaker Dennis O’Brien in announcing their joint support for legislation that would create a 20-year mandatory minimum sentence for anyone who discharges a firearm with the intent to injure, maim or kill a law enforcement officer.

    The legislation expands upon House Bill 2467, which passed the House in 2006 establishing a 10-year mandatory minimum sentence for injury to a police officer.

    “The need for Speaker O’Brien’s legislation has been tragically demonstrated by the last five weeks in Philadelphia where we have seen three city police officers shot and wounded and one, Charles Cassidy, shot and killed,” Governor Rendell said. “This carnage is overwhelming evidence of the need for swift and sure punishment that acts as a deterrent to armed assault on our police officers.”

    “Let the word go out that in Pennsylvania anyone who fires a gun at a police officer is going to jail for at least two decades,” said Speaker O’Brien. “We should, and we must, give maximum protection to those who put their lives on the line protecting us.”
    Governor Rendell indicated that he would raise private sector funds for an advertising campaign to inform the public of the existence of this strong deterrent after the legislation is enacted.

    The Governor supports the ongoing series of workgroups established by Speaker O'Brien that are now crafting recommendations for systemic changes to reduce violence in communities across Pennsylvania.

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    Doug Huffman wrote:
    http://www.state.pa.us/papower/cwp/v...69150&A=11

    Governor Edward G. Rendell today joined Pennsylvania House Speaker Dennis O’Brien in announcing their joint support for legislation that would create a 20-year mandatory minimum sentence for anyone who discharges a firearm with the intent to injure, maim or kill a law enforcement officer.

    The legislation expands upon House Bill 2467, which passed the House in 2006 establishing a 10-year mandatory minimum sentence for injury to a police officer.

    “The need for Speaker O’Brien’s legislation has been tragically demonstrated by the last five weeks in Philadelphia where we have seen three city police officers shot and wounded and one, Charles Cassidy, shot and killed,” Governor Rendell said. “This carnage is overwhelming evidence of the need for swift and sure punishment that acts as a deterrent to armed assault on our police officers.”

    “Let the word go out that in Pennsylvania anyone who fires a gun at a police officer is going to jail for at least two decades,” said Speaker O’Brien. “We should, and we must, give maximum protection to those who put their lives on the line protecting us.”
    Governor Rendell indicated that he would raise private sector funds for an advertising campaign to inform the public of the existence of this strong deterrent after the legislation is enacted.

    The Governor supports the ongoing series of workgroups established by Speaker O'Brien that are now crafting recommendations for systemic changes to reduce violence in communities across Pennsylvania.
    Does this only apply if the officer is on-duty?



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    I'm not saying that this is a "bad" law, but why is the punishment for shooting at a cop any worse than shooting at an innocent (and probably helpless) civilian?

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    Cue-Ball wrote:
    I'm not saying that this is a "bad" law, but why is the punishment for shooting at a cop any worse than shooting at an innocent (and probably helpless) civilian?
    Typically you know that a law enforcement officer is not out to get you while on duty, their job is to protect, so why would you want to kill them, or would them? It would be easier to say that you did not know the true intentions of a civilian. Also, people can get irate with cops and kill them while they are off duty for something that happened on duty, which happens to be an aggravating circumstance in indiana, although I am unsure as to other states.


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    So, it's still kosher to stab a cop? K...

    I wonder if this will still apply under "resisting an unlawful arrest". Is perhaps Rendell setting up an untouchable paramilitary, er, police force for when he begins the gun confiscation?

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    openryan wrote:
    Typically you know that a law enforcement officer is not out to get you while on duty, their job is to protect, so why would you want to kill them, or would them? It would be easier to say that you did not know the true intentions of a civilian.
    Sorry, but I don't agree. While most law enforcement officers are good guys, so are most civilians. There have been numerous examples of officers beating suspects, framing people, killing innocents, etc. I don't trust a police officer that I don't personally know any more than I trust a random citizen. I certainly don't think that my life is worth any less than Officer Friendly's.

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    Cue-Ball wrote:
    I'm not saying that this is a "bad" law, but why is the punishment for shooting at a cop any worse than shooting at an innocent (and probably helpless) civilian?
    I'm saying its a bad law!

    so that 90 year old lady that shot at the cops who raided herbased on lies(if the cops hadn't killed her on the spot) would go away for 20 years?

    enforce the laws they already have, makethe BGserve the time sentenced to.

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    Cue-Ball wrote:
    openryan wrote:
    Typically you know that a law enforcement officer is not out to get you while on duty, their job is to protect, so why would you want to kill them, or would them? It would be easier to say that you did not know the true intentions of a civilian.
    Sorry, but I don't agree. While most law enforcement officers are good guys, so are most civilians. There have been numerous examples of officers beating suspects, framing people, killing innocents, etc. I don't trust a police officer that I don't personally know any more than I trust a random citizen. I certainly don't think that my life is worth any less than Officer Friendly's.
    I think it goes along with the dangers of the job, even if police officers are not killed as often as regular citizens, they are put in that position daily to go jump into conflict and deal with the bs of others, maybe they chose that path, maybe not, either way, the danger is clear and present, and they can't turn away from it unless they want to lose their jobs. Although I am sure this wouldn't be much of a deterrent, they would appreciate it.

    I don't think this is cheaping your life, and it isnt making anyones life better, I think if you are caught killing someone and their is irrefutable evidence, you should be shot on the spot no matter what happened, no appeals, no other crap. Too much time and money is being wasted on appeals and dealing with petty excuses for peoples bad behavior.



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    Another BAD LAW that will do NOTHING.



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    Pa. Patriot wrote:
    Another BAD LAW that will do NOTHING.

    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.

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    openryan wrote:
    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    It's a bad law because it puts one class of people above all others. If you murder someone, it should not matter if the victim is a cobbler or a prince. The act itself is wrong in either case, and no one man's life is worth more than any other.

    I think it goes along with the dangers of the job, even if police officers are not killed as often as regular citizens, they are put in that position daily to go jump into conflict and deal with the bs of others
    This really has no bearing at all on the law or the punishments doled out to people who break it. There are plenty of people who have jobs far more dangerous than law enforcement, but I don't see them getting special treatment under the law.

    Although I am sure this wouldn't be much of a deterrent, they would appreciate it.
    There are a lot of things that I would personally appreciate, but that does not mean they should be so.

    I don't think this is cheaping your life, and it isnt making anyones life better, I think if you are caught killing someone and their is irrefutable evidence, you should be shot on the spot no matter what happened, no appeals, no other crap. Too much time and money is being wasted on appeals and dealing with petty excuses for peoples bad behavior.
    It would be a true tragedy if that sort of "justice" were to take place in our society. While I dislike the amount of time and money spent to prosecute criminals, I also realize that mistakes are made and everyone deserves their day in court. It often winds up that the people who face "irrefutable evidence" turn out to be innocent.


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    Cue-Ball wrote:
    openryan wrote:
    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    It's a bad law because it puts one class of people above all others. If you murder someone, it should not matter if the victim is a cobbler or a prince. The act itself is wrong in either case, and no one man's life is worth more than any other.

    I think it goes along with the dangers of the job, even if police officers are not killed as often as regular citizens, they are put in that position daily to go jump into conflict and deal with the bs of others
    This really has no bearing at all on the law or the punishments doled out to people who break it. There are plenty of people who have jobs far more dangerous than law enforcement, but I don't see them getting special treatment under the law.

    Although I am sure this wouldn't be much of a deterrent, they would appreciate it.
    There are a lot of things that I would personally appreciate, but that does not mean they should be so.

    I don't think this is cheaping your life, and it isnt making anyones life better, I think if you are caught killing someone and their is irrefutable evidence, you should be shot on the spot no matter what happened, no appeals, no other crap. Too much time and money is being wasted on appeals and dealing with petty excuses for peoples bad behavior.
    It would be a true tragedy if that sort of "justice" were to take place in our society. While I dislike the amount of time and money spent to prosecute criminals, I also realize that mistakes are made and everyone deserves their day in court. It often winds up that the people who face "irrefutable evidence" turn out to be innocent.
    Agree there entirely. How about a mandatory 20-year sentence for anyone who shoots a person who carries a gun for self-defense? People who do this are going about their daily business with the intent to aid themselves and others... why would anyone want to kill them?

    Or, better yet, how about letting judges and juries do their job rather than legislating (perhaps unconstitutionally?) minimum sentences?

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    imperialism2024 wrote:
    Cue-Ball wrote:
    openryan wrote:
    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    It's a bad law because it puts one class of people above all others. If you murder someone, it should not matter if the victim is a cobbler or a prince. The act itself is wrong in either case, and no one man's life is worth more than any other.

    I think it goes along with the dangers of the job, even if police officers are not killed as often as regular citizens, they are put in that position daily to go jump into conflict and deal with the bs of others
    This really has no bearing at all on the law or the punishments doled out to people who break it. There are plenty of people who have jobs far more dangerous than law enforcement, but I don't see them getting special treatment under the law.

    Although I am sure this wouldn't be much of a deterrent, they would appreciate it.
    There are a lot of things that I would personally appreciate, but that does not mean they should be so.

    I don't think this is cheaping your life, and it isnt making anyones life better, I think if you are caught killing someone and their is irrefutable evidence, you should be shot on the spot no matter what happened, no appeals, no other crap. Too much time and money is being wasted on appeals and dealing with petty excuses for peoples bad behavior.
    It would be a true tragedy if that sort of "justice" were to take place in our society. While I dislike the amount of time and money spent to prosecute criminals, I also realize that mistakes are made and everyone deserves their day in court. It often winds up that the people who face "irrefutable evidence" turn out to be innocent.
    Agree there entirely. How about a mandatory 20-year sentence for anyone who shoots a person who carries a gun for self-defense? People who do this are going about their daily business with the intent to aid themselves and others... why would anyone want to kill them?

    Or, better yet, how about letting judges and juries do their job rather than legislating (perhaps unconstitutionally?) minimum sentences?
    How can you find this to be unconstitutional?


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    openryan wrote:
    Pa. Patriot wrote:
    Another BAD LAW that will do NOTHING.

    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    Your kidding, right?

    Since others have already pointed out the reasons it is "bad" I'll zero in on your own statement of "It might do nothing". Yep, and ALL laws are an another available tool for tyrants to abuse.

    Good enough reason for me.

    Not to mention the absurdity of a "useless" law. Please dont insult my intelligence with any malarkey about some possible far fetched effect of a class specific law. There is simply no reason for this law, therefor it is not worthy of being one. Period. We have more than ehough worthless laws, please don't feed the machine with your blind approval.


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    Pa. Patriot wrote:
    openryan wrote:
    Pa. Patriot wrote:
    Another BAD LAW that will do NOTHING.

    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    Your kidding, right?

    Since others have already pointed out the reasons it is "bad" I'll zero in on your own statement of "It might do nothing". Yep, and ALL laws are an another available tool for tyrants to abuse.

    Good enough reason for me.

    Not to mention the absurdity of a "useless" law. Please dont insult my intelligence with any malarkey about some possible far fetched effect of a class specific law. There is simply no reason for this law, therefor it is not worthy of being one. Period. We have more than ehough worthless laws, please don't feed the machine with your blind approval.
    "It might do nothing" and there were a few words after that too...

    I don't think it is bad at all, certainly there are more dangerous jobs out there, where one cannot legally arm themselves while performing duties, but these men and women put their lives on the line daily for the safety of others, putting through legislation that would hopefully deter some violence against them I don't think would be deemed as bad, at least not by myself.

    As far as injury goes would be the only thing I have a qualm with, as to its defintion, it could be misconstrued quite easily and without knowing the full definition as they say it, I could not 100% say I am in agreement, however I do not think this is a "BAD LAW" on any account.

    I think the men and women who go out and put their lives on the line should have as much protection be it active or passive as possible.

    Edit = Furthermore, I don't know how I questioned your intelligence, I simply was curious as to your reasoning. You are of course, fully entitled to your opinion, as I am to mine. I was hoping to hear how you came to the conclusion of it being a bad law.

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    openryan wrote:
    imperialism2024 wrote:
    Cue-Ball wrote:
    openryan wrote:
    Why is it a "BAD LAW"? It might do nothing, although I think it will have at least a very small effect, in the long term if enforced.
    It's a bad law because it puts one class of people above all others. If you murder someone, it should not matter if the victim is a cobbler or a prince. The act itself is wrong in either case, and no one man's life is worth more than any other.

    I think it goes along with the dangers of the job, even if police officers are not killed as often as regular citizens, they are put in that position daily to go jump into conflict and deal with the bs of others
    This really has no bearing at all on the law or the punishments doled out to people who break it. There are plenty of people who have jobs far more dangerous than law enforcement, but I don't see them getting special treatment under the law.

    Although I am sure this wouldn't be much of a deterrent, they would appreciate it.
    There are a lot of things that I would personally appreciate, but that does not mean they should be so.

    I don't think this is cheaping your life, and it isnt making anyones life better, I think if you are caught killing someone and their is irrefutable evidence, you should be shot on the spot no matter what happened, no appeals, no other crap. Too much time and money is being wasted on appeals and dealing with petty excuses for peoples bad behavior.
    It would be a true tragedy if that sort of "justice" were to take place in our society. While I dislike the amount of time and money spent to prosecute criminals, I also realize that mistakes are made and everyone deserves their day in court. It often winds up that the people who face "irrefutable evidence" turn out to be innocent.
    Agree there entirely. How about a mandatory 20-year sentence for anyone who shoots a person who carries a gun for self-defense? People who do this are going about their daily business with the intent to aid themselves and others... why would anyone want to kill them?

    Or, better yet, how about letting judges and juries do their job rather than legislating (perhaps unconstitutionally?) minimum sentences?
    How can you find this to be unconstitutional?
    Let's look at the Pennsylvania constitution, er, the latest one:

    Article 1
    Rights of Accused in Criminal Prosecutions
    Section 9
    In all criminal prosecutions the accused hath a right to be heard by himself and his counsel, to demand the nature and cause of the accusation against him, to be confronted with the witnesses against him, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and, in prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy public trial by an impartial jury of the vicinage; he cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself, nor can he be deprived of his life, liberty or property, unless by the judgment of his peers or the law of the land. The use of a suppressed voluntary admission or voluntary confession to impeach the credibility of a person may be permitted and shall not be construed as compelling a person to give evidence.

    This leads me to believe that if a person is being deprived of liberty, such as through minimum sentencing, it must be through a law. Fair enough.


    Article 5
    Judicial Administration
    Section 10.
    (c) The Supreme Court shall have the power to prescribe general rules governing practice, procedure and the conduct of all courts, justices of the peace and all officers serving process or enforcing orders, judgments or decrees of any court or justice of the peace, including the power to provide for assignment and reassignment of classes of actions or classes of appeals among the several courts as the needs of justice shall require, and for admission to the bar and to practice law, and the administration of all courts and supervision of all officers of the Judicial Branch, if such rules are consistent with this Constitution and neither abridge, enlarge nor modify the substantive rights of any litigant, nor affect the right of the General Assembly to determine the jurisdiction of any court or justice of the peace, nor suspend nor alter any statute of limitation or repose. All laws shall be suspended to the extent that they are inconsistent with rules prescribed under these provisions.

    Here's where interpretation comes in, I believe. The way I read it, the judiciary system essentially is self-contained, and outside of certain situations, the law cannot hold influence over court proceedings, such as the sentencing process.


    So I'm not saying it's unconstitutional, but might be...

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    Doug Huffman wrote:
    http://www.state.pa.us/papower/cwp/v...69150&A=11

    Governor Edward G. Rendell today joined Pennsylvania House Speaker Dennis O’Brien in announcing their joint support for legislation that would create a 20-year mandatory minimum sentence for anyone who discharges a firearm with the intent to injure, maim or kill a law enforcement officer.

    The legislation expands upon House Bill 2467, which passed the House in 2006 establishing a 10-year mandatory minimum sentence for injury to a police officer.

    “The need for Speaker O’Brien’s legislation has been tragically demonstrated by the last five weeks in Philadelphia where we have seen three city police officers shot and wounded and one, Charles Cassidy, shot and killed,” Governor Rendell said. “This carnage is overwhelming evidence of the need for swift and sure punishment that acts as a deterrent to armed assault on our police officers.”

    “Let the word go out that in Pennsylvania anyone who fires a gun at a police officer is going to jail for at least two decades,” said Speaker O’Brien. “We should, and we must, give maximum protection to those who put their lives on the line protecting us.”
    Governor Rendell indicated that he would raise private sector funds for an advertising campaign to inform the public of the existence of this strong deterrent after the legislation is enacted.

    The Governor supports the ongoing series of workgroups established by Speaker O'Brien that are now crafting recommendations for systemic changes to reduce violence in communities across Pennsylvania.
    This is not as much as "BAD LAW" as it is a stupid law.

    Last year it was 10 years in prison(min.) for killing an officer, and now it's 20 years for attempting to kill an officer.. It blurs the line between "dumb" and "stupid"

    I have NEVER heard of someone killing an officer and then getting 5 years with 4 suspended! The Judicary throws the book at people like this, the whole book!

    Can me stupid, but the people who are going to commit these crimes aren't going through a RATIONAL THOUGHT PROCESS before killing someone.. "Oh damn.. I was going to prison for 10 years.. DATS OK.. BUT NAWW.. 20 years is too long!"

    I argue that if every law on the books written after 1970 just VANISHED and the judiciary exercised some backbone, we would not have any adverse problems.

    What's next: A law for jay-walking on Sundays after 11am, but only on the 3rd Sunday of the month, because we jay-walk for fun on the 1st Sunday of the month, and the 2nd Sunday of the month is jay-walk practice.

    This is what happens when you have full-time politicians!

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    psmartin wrote:
    Can me stupid, but the people who are going to commit these crimes aren't going through a RATIONAL THOUGHT PROCESS before killing someone.. "Oh damn.. I was going to prison for 10 years.. DATS OK.. BUT NAWW.. 20 years is too long!"
    There was a thread that I cannot locate that discussed a study of "cop killer". The general pattern among "cop killers" is that as gang members and career criminals, they live every day as if it is their last, because they recognize the great chance that they'll be killed. Therefore, prison terms don't scare them, and they don't hesitate a second to kill anyone who gets in their way.

    Now, when the paramilitary, er, police conduct a no-knock warrant on the wrong house and a person takes a shot at guys dressed in all black breaking into his house, if that person survives, he's looking at 20 years minimum. Nicely done, King Edward.

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    Do we have the bill yet?

    I hope it has an exception for self defense, including use of reasonable force against the police to prevent unlawful arrest - the common law in many or most states, inlcuding VA, allows this.

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