Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Senate Committee on the Judiciary
  • The house Passed May 16th, 2018
    Roll Call Vote 382 Yea / 35 Nay
      house Committees
      House Committee on the Judiciary
    IntroducedMay 8th, 2018

Log in or create an account to see how your Reps voted!

What is it?

This bill — the Protect and Serve Act of 2018 — would make attacking a law enforcement officer a federal crime when the defendant, victim, or weapon used were involved in any interstate or international travel or commerce during the course of or prior to the attack. Causing or attempting to cause serious bodily harm to an officer under such circumstances would carry a prison term of up to 10 years plus a fine, while killing or kidnapping an officer would carry any term of years or life imprisonment.

Impact

Law enforcement officers and those who attack them; and the criminal justice system.

Cost

The CBO estimates that enacting this bill would have an insignificant impact on the federal budget.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. John Rutherford (R-FL) introduced this bill to create federal penalties for attacking law enforcement officers:

“As a career law enforcement officer and sheriff of Jacksonville for 12 years, I know what officers go through every day when they put on their uniform, say goodbye to their families, and go out on the streets doing the important work of protecting our communities. With an uptick in ambush attacks on law enforcement, like we saw last month in Trenton, Florida, we must ensure that there are steep consequences for anyone who targets our law enforcement officers. The Protect and Serve Act will serve as a significant deterrent for anyone who deliberately targets officers with violence.”

Original cosponsor Rep. Val Demings (D-FL) added:

“After 27 years in law enforcement, I believe that officers must hold themselves to the highest standards,  be accountable to their communities, and perform their duties with honor and integrity. There has been a 75 percent increase in officers shot and killed this year. Ambush-style killings have taken numerous officers’ lives. Last month, two sheriff’s deputies here in Florida were assassinated while eating lunch. We must give our officers the tools, training, and protections needed to be safe on the job.”

Some House Democrats expressed frustration with this bill in its committee report:

“H.R. 5698 will be considered on the House Floor during the annual Police Week activities in Washington, DC. Rather than advancing legislation that amounts to an empty gesture, the House should focus on real reform measures that will protect law enforcement, first responders, and the communities they serve. Over the years, well-documented, unconstitutional policing practices in communities of color across the  United States have eroded trust between these communities and the law enforcement sworn to protect them. Almost 1,000 people were killed by police in 2017 according to the The Washington Post. Another media outlet estimates there were more than 1,100 police-related fatalities last year, with people of color representing more than 50 percent of those unarmed during fatal encounters with police.”

This legislation passed the House Judiciary Committee on a voice vote and has the support of five cosponsors, including four Republicans and one Democrat. The National Fraternal Order of Police, the largest law enforcement labor union in the U.S. with over 335,000 members, expressed its support for the bill.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: LPETTET / iStock)

AKA

Protect and Serve Act of 2018

Official Title

To amend title 18, United States Code, to punish criminal offenses targeting law enforcement officers, and for other purposes.

    I am shocked that this is even a question? It absolutely should be a federal crime. Police Officers are here to protect us, and risk their lives doing so. We, in turn, should do all we can to protect them.
    Like (89)
    Follow
    Share
    People should have the right to defend themselves, even against cops...
    Like (231)
    Follow
    Share
    NO. Every week, we see officers escalating their own behavior. At traffic stops, from the use of “F” bombs to shootings, we see officers out of control. Their hyper focus is on persons of Color. This law is ripe for abuse and an unnecessary overreach by the Fed government. This is not about safety but is (R) pandering. **This Congress PASSED this Bill 😡
    Like (168)
    Follow
    Share
    So if you wear a badge, you get protection from the federal government in case someone physically assaults you (for any reason). If you’re unjustifiably assaulted by a person with a badge, you’re protected by the depth of your wallet. Yeah I get it...that seems fair 😒
    Like (160)
    Follow
    Share
    Attacking a police officer should only be a federal crime when it’s a federal crime for them to attack us. I’m a voter in Ohio’s 12th congressional district and I oppose this bill.
    Like (103)
    Follow
    Share
    Only if it applies in the reverse case as well. Lots more people are being killed by cops than the other way around. Respect is earned... not legislated.
    Like (76)
    Follow
    Share
    Police are people, not a special class in need of protection. Existing law covers them adequately.
    Like (51)
    Follow
    Share
    This is crazy. The states are in charge and should be left that way. This would overwhelm the federal courts and take the rights of states away.
    Like (41)
    Follow
    Share
    Leave this to the states.
    Like (34)
    Follow
    Share
    In this day and age ANYTHING including defending oneself from bodily harm can be marked as “attack” on police. Far less police fall victim of anti police attacks than police brutality. We cannot allow the government to create more excuses to murder citizens without judge and jury. If the prospect of risking ones life while in the line of duty frightens an officer I humbly ask you to consider other employment ....
    Like (30)
    Follow
    Share
    This is a state and local function. The federal government should not have legislation for this.
    Like (26)
    Follow
    Share
    When flinching while being kicked on the ground is often called resisting arrest and assault on an officer, it should not carry an even stricter punishment than what already comes with it.
    Like (21)
    Follow
    Share
    Contrary to popular belief, badges do not grant extra rights.
    Like (20)
    Follow
    Share
    No. It's a state crime unless it's a federal officer, then it's a federal crime. Keep the laws the way their suppose to be and stop trying to grant extra rights / privileges to police. There is already way to much...
    Like (17)
    Follow
    Share
    This is completely unnecessary and clearly political grandstanding. The states are perfectly capable of handling these kinds of crimes. Congress should focus more on unarmed Americans especially black Americans that are shot and killed by police everyday.
    Like (17)
    Follow
    Share
    Those who support this just want another reason to put people of color in jail. This isn’t about any individual cop—it’s about a system that doesn’t care about black lives. Harsher punishments for assaulting a cop means more innocent people in jail with longer sentences, thereby funding for-profit prisons. Cops need deescalation training now. The system needs to be uprooted.
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    Should police attacking an unarmed person be a federal offense??
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    It's ALREADY a crime. This is just filler to give cops more excuses and privilege when they are caught breaking the laws they are supposed to protect. You want to give cops more protection while also supporting the citizens they are HIRED to serve? Make body cameras MANDATORY and fire/incarcerate those who do not comply to body cams.
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    Police officers aren’t employed by the federal government, they’re employed by the state. Thus: no federal crime. Putting this bill forth just wastes time and money.
    Like (14)
    Follow
    Share
    Citizens need protections from Police Officers, this is another layer of reckless empowerment. Makes sense only if there is a rigorous citizen self-defense exclusion. Too many citizens are being murdered, or assaulted by Police Officers.
    Like (13)
    Follow
    Share
    MORE