Senate Version Of Mark's Law Might Not Pass Assembly
Should the killing of an emergency medical responder like Mark Davis in Cape Vincent in 2009 be just as serious as the murder of a police officer?
This week the state Senate said "yes," but Assemblywoman Addie Russell says the same bill may not fly in the Assembly.
"I'm not sure we're going to get the highest level," Ruseell said.
"It really has been reserved for cop killers and pedophiles for years."
As passed by the senate, Mark's law would allow a mandatory sentence of life without parole.
Its sponsor points to its support from both Republicans and Democrats.
"We have passed the bill in the Senate, once again, 59 to 0," Sen Patty Ritchie, "and I would hope that the Assemblywoman would be able to convince her colleagues to pass the bill in the Assembly."
Russell says the Assembly bill may be changed to provide only the possibility - not the requirement - of life without parole.
"Our law enforcement officers put themselves in harm's way every day," Russell said.
"They're always going to be put in dangerous situations and so that's why we want to ensure that the highest level of crime is held for them."
Ritchie says medical responders are also in harm's way every day.
"Somebody that harms them should be held at the same level as a police officer," Ritchie said.
If the Assembly passes a different version of Mark's Law than the Senate's, it could stall the bill entirely and nothing might reach the desk of Governor Cuomo to be signed into law.
Wednesday, May 22, 2013, Watertown, NY
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