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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: December 22, 2014 03:38 PM
From: Representative Dom Costa
To: All House members
Subject: Aggravated Assault of Crossing Guards, Volunteer Firefighters, and Public Utility Workers
 

In the near future, I will re-introduce legislation – House Bill 437 – to amend Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses), § 2702 (Aggravated Assault), of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes by expanding the definition of “firefighter” and adding crossing guards, public utility employees, and employees of electric cooperatives to the protected class of individuals currently delineated in § 2702.

In June of 2009, a Pittsburgh crossing guard was assaulted while acting in her official capacity. The perpetrator was not charged with aggravated assault because crossing guards are not members of the protected class set forth by the aggravated assault statute. In 2010, a Philadelphia motorist who left a crossing guard’s eyes swollen shut after a brutal altercation was sentenced to mere probation after a judge found the motorist guilty of the lesser offense of simple assault.

Moreover, there are several other classes of professionals who sometimes encounter hostile members of the public while in the course of performing their official duties. As such, in addition to crossing guards, my legislation also includes protections for public utility employees, employees of electric cooperatives, volunteer firefighters, and special fire police.

It is imperative that we protect those who may encounter danger while serving in their official capacity. Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.



Introduced as HB120