Blue Lives Matter

Kentucky Becomes Second State to Pass Blue Lives Matter Law

Kentucky has become the second state in the Union to pass a bill that makes attacking a police officer a hate crime. 

Governor Matt Bevin signed the bill last week, which is slated to go into effect this coming summer. 

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Mississippi Senate Passes "Blue Lives Matter" Bill, Moves onto House

Photo: via history.com

Photo: via history.com

The Mississippi State Senate passed it's version of a "Blue Lives Matter" bill making assault on a police officer, firefighter, or medic a hate crime.

The legislation also doubles the penalties against a person convicted of such a crime.

The bill passed the Mississippi Senate 37-13; however, it met with resistance from some senators. 

The bill will now move on to the Mississippi House for a vote.

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"Blue Lives Matter" Law Invoked in Arrest of NOLA Man on Hate Crime

Raul Delatoba;  Photo: Orleans Justice Center

Raul Delatoba; Photo: Orleans Justice Center

A Louisiana man has been charged with a hate crime after uttering slurs at arresting officers who had taken him into custody after he broke a window at a French Quarter hotel.

The man, identified as 34-year old Raul Delatoba, was taken into custody after breaking a window at the Royal Sonesta Hotel on famed Bourbon Street.

After being taken to the local police station, Delatoba allegedly uttered pejoratives at arresting officers.

Delatoba allegedly called a female police officer a "duma a-- c---" and another officer a "dumb a-- n-----." 

A warrant detailing Delatoba's arrest included charges of a hate crime, invoking Louisiana's recently enacted Blue Lives Matter law that makes attacks against a person due to their occupation as a police officer a hate crime. 

"The hate crime charge stems from Delatoba's attack on individuals based on their race, sex, and occupation," stated the warrant.

This is apparently the first time a person has been charged with a hate crime under the new Blue Lives Matter law in Louisiana. 

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Blue Lives Matter Bill Becomes Law in Louisiana

Gov. John Bel Edwards; Photo: via ktbs.com

Gov. John Bel Edwards; Photo: via ktbs.com

On Thursday, Governor John Bel Edwards of Louisiana signed the nation's first law adding police officers to the list of protected parties under state hate crime legislation.

The move has drawn praise from within law enforcement circles but criticism remains from those who feel that adding police officers to the list of protected classes dilutes the historic meaning of hate crime legislation. 

Governor Edwards, undeterred by the criticism, said, “The men and women who put their lives on the line every day, often under very dangerous circumstances are true heroes and they deserve every protection that we can give them."

He added, "They serve and protect our communities and our families. The overarching message is that hate crimes will not be tolerated in Louisiana.”

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Bill to Make Assaulting Police Officers a Hate Crime Heads to Louisiana Governor's Desk

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards;  Photo: Marie Constantin via gov.louisiana.gov

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards; Photo: Marie Constantin via gov.louisiana.gov

House Bill 953, otherwise known as the "Blue Lives Matter" bill, is heading to the desk of Louisiana Governor John Bel Edward.

A 33-3 vote in the Louisiana Senate cleared the bill's path for the governor's signature.

The bill would make Louisiana one of the first states in the union to make attacking a police officer or firefighter a hate crime.

The bill would also allow for increased penalties of anyone convicted of committing such a crime, adding an additional five years in prison and fines of $5,000.

Although the bill received little to no vocal opposition within the state legislature, not everyone supported the effort to add police officers and first responders to the list of protected people.

A statement from the New Orleans chapter of Black Youth 100 called the bill, "an insidious attempt to destabilize our First Amendment rights as community members who hold the police, and others sworn by oath to serve and protect, accountable.”

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