HUNTSVILLE, AL- Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions is partnering with Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey to introduce the 'Thin Blue Line' act in response to the recent surge of attacks on police officers around the country.
Huntsville Fraternal Order of Police President Bill Davis says this is the right legislation at the right time.
"Under today's current conditions, officers are actually afraid in some situations to do their jobs because they're afraid someone is going to either label them a racist... or file brutality charges... a lot of officers now being targeted by the public," said Davis.
The bill would impose harsher penalties to those who target officers due to their profession and make the murder of any law enforcement officer or first responder, including firefighters, an aggravating factor in favor of the death penalty under federal law. Current federal law applies this penalty only when the murder victim is a federal law enforcement officer or prosecutor. Alabama law already makes killing a police officer, deputy, state trooper or other peace officer a death penalty-eligible offense. Davis says he's glad Senator Sessions recognizes local law enforcement need protection too.
"They're out there to protect and serve and protect the public, so give them a break and let's do our job. We'll protect you and we'll do what we need to do," said Davis.
Senator Sessions said, "This legislation honors the message sent by law-abiding Americans that we cannot stand idly by as attacks are waged upon those who serve and protect our communities."