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PRINTER'S NO. 451
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE BILL
No.
483
Session of
2023
INTRODUCED BY SOLOMON, HOHENSTEIN, HILL-EVANS, HANBIDGE, SIEGEL,
KINSEY, SANCHEZ, MADDEN, HOWARD, PASHINSKI, SCHLOSSBERG,
D. WILLIAMS, FREEMAN, NEILSON AND FRANKEL, MARCH 16, 2023
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY, MARCH 16, 2023
AN ACT
Amending Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses) of the Pennsylvania
Consolidated Statutes, in firearms and other dangerous
articles, providing for gun violence task forces.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Title 18 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated
Statutes is amended by adding a section to read:
§ 6129. Gun violence task forces .
(a) Establishment.--
(1) A gun violence task force is established in each
county which exceeds the age-adjusted, firearm-related death
rate per 100,000 goal contained in the United States
Department of Health and Human Services Healthy People 2030
initiative.
(2) A county in which a gun violence task force is not
established under paragraph (1) may establish a gun violence
task force.
(3) A gun violence task force shall be under the
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authority of the Attorney General.
(b) Powers and duties.--
(1) A gun violence task force shall investigate and
prosecute violations of sections 6105 (relating to persons
not to possess, use, manufacture, control, sell or transfer
firearms) and 6111 (relating to sale or transfer of
firearms), and similar offenses under Federal law, in a
county.
(2) A gun violence task force shall initiate
prosecutions in a court of competent jurisdiction.
(3) A gun violence task force may utilize investigatory
teams under subsection (e).
(c) Composition.--
(1) A gun violence task force shall include, at a
minimum:
(i) The Attorney General or deputy attorneys
general.
(ii) Members of the office of the district attorney
in a county.
(iii) Law enforcement officers of the Attorney
General.
(iv) Law enforcement officers of a county.
(v) Law enforcement officers of the Pennsylvania
State Police.
(2) A gun violence task force may include, as determined
by the Attorney General:
(i) Federal law enforcement officers.
(ii) Other Commonwealth law enforcement officers
located in a county.
(iii) Other local law enforcement officers located
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in a county.
(iv) Campus police officers located in a county.
(v) Transit agency police officers located in a
county.
(vi) Representatives of key stakeholders in
communities that are experiencing high and increasing
rates of gun violence.
(vii) Faith leaders that work with communities
experiencing high rates of gun violence.
(viii) A community relations officer that is from a
community experiencing high rates of gun violence.
(ix) A victim of crime that works in neighborhoods
experiencing high rates of gun violence.
(x) An expert in preventive crime measures who has
advised on crime-reduction techniques.
(d) Funding.--A gun violence task force shall be funded from
annual General Fund appropriations. Funding shall be under the
control of the Attorney General.
(e) Investigatory teams.--The Attorney General may empanel
individualized investigatory teams that work in conjunction with
and under the purview of a gun violence task force .
(f) Notice.-- Each law enforcement agency that is a member of
a gun violence task force shall notify the gun violence task
force of any arrest or other criminal action or proceeding
involving an alleged violation of section 6105 or 6111 within 48
hours of the arrest or of instituting the action or proceeding.
(g) Preemptive jurisdiction over certain offenses.--
(1) The A ttorney General may assert preemptive
prosecutorial jurisdiction over any criminal actions or
proceedings, including proceedings for the forfeiture or
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condemnation of property under 42 Pa.C.S. Ch. 58 (relating to
forfeiture of assets), for which the Attorney General has
jurisdiction under section 6105 or 6111.
(2) Any assertion of preemptive prosecutorial
jurisdiction under this subsection shall be within the sole
discretion of the Attorney General, who shall consider the
totality of the circumstances in deciding whether to assert
that jurisdiction, including:
(i) Whether the alleged violation of section 6105 or
6111 is the lead charge and the severity of any other
offense charged in conjunction with the alleged violation
of section 6105 or 6111.
(ii) The criminal history record information of the
alleged offender, including whether the offender was
previously convicted of an offense under this chapter.
(iii) Whether a gun violence task force was involved
in the investigation of the alleged violation of section
6105 or 6111.
(iv) Whether a gun violence task force has
sufficient resources to prosecute the alleged offender.
(v) Whether the alleged offender utilized a firearm
during the commission of a felony.
(vi) Whether the alleged offender is involved or
associated with the sale, manufacture, distribution or
delivery of any controlled substance or counterfeit
controlled substance in violation of the act of April 14,
1972 (P.L.233, No.64), known as The Controlled Substance,
Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.
(vii) The impact of the alleged offense on the
victim or the community.
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(viii) Whether the alleged offender's commission of
the offense violated the terms and conditions of a
sentence or bail bond.
(ix) Any other relevant or aggravating circumstances
that would tend to support the assertion of preemptive
prosecutorial jurisdiction.
(3) The Attorney General may not assert preemptive
prosecutorial jurisdiction under this subsection if the
offender unlawfully possessed a firearm during the commission
of murder of the first degree or second degree or a crime of
violence, as that term is defined in 42 Pa.C.S. § 9714(g)
(relating to sentences for second and subsequent offenses),
unless upon written request by the district attorney of a
county.
(4) In cases in which the Attorney General asserts
preemptive prosecutorial jurisdiction under this subsection,
no other prosecuting entity for the Commonwealth shall have
authority to act, except as authorized by the Attorney
General. No person shall have standing to challenge the
authority of the Attorney General to prosecute the cases,
and, if any challenge is made, the challenge shall be
dismissed and no relief shall be available in the courts of
this Commonwealth to the entity making the challenge.
(5) Any grant of jurisdiction to the Attorney General
under section 6105 or 6111 shall be exclusive to a gun
violence task force .
(6) The provisions of this subsection shall expire
December 31, 2027.
(h) Annual reports.--
(1) By October 1 of each year, the Attorney General
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shall make an annual report on the operation of gun violence
task forces to:
(i) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the Senate.
(ii) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives.
(iii) The chairperson and minority chairperson of
the Judiciary Committee of the Senate.
(iv) The chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives.
(2) Each report under this subsection shall contain the
following information for the previous fiscal year regarding
each gun violence task force :
(i) T he number of members, per agency, serving on
the gun violence task force .
(ii) The total number of arrests in a county for
alleged violations of section 6105 or 6111, including
separately the total number of arrests by the gun
violence task force .
(iii) The total number of bills of information filed
for alleged violations of section 6105 or 6111, including
separately the total number of bills filed by the gun
violence task force .
(iv) The total number of convictions resulting from
prosecutions under subparagraph (iii), including
separately the total number of convictions resulting from
prosecutions by the gun violence task force .
(v) The sentences imposed for each conviction under
subparagraph (iv), including separately the sentences
imposed for each conviction resulting from a prosecution
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by the gun violence task force .
(vi) The number of firearms seized by the gun
violence task force .
(vii) A summary of expenditures, including any money
appropriated for the gun violence task force in a
previous year that is carried over or unspent.
Section 2. This act shall take effect in 90 days.
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