Rep. Sanders Wants to Increase Penalty for Assault on Law Enforcement

OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation filed by state Rep. Mike Sanders would increase the penalty for assaulting a law enforcement officer who is not wearing his uniform but who the assailant knows to be an officer, he said today.

Currently, the assailant would face a felony charge for an assault on a uniformed officer, but only a misdemeanor if out of uniform.

“The uniform is the determining factor right now and I don’t think that is appropriate to all situations,” saidSanders, R-Kingfisher. “My legislation would simply make it possible to charge the assailant with a felony if it can be proven in court that the assailant attacked their victim because of his position in law enforcement.”

House Bill 1318 adds the following language to statute:

“For purposes of this section, if an officer is off duty and the nature of the assault or assault and battery is related to the official position of the officer, then it shall fall within the meaning of ‘in the performance of his or her duties’ as an officer.”

Bill filing ended at 4 p.m. on Jan. 22. The 2015 legislative session will reconvene on Feb. 2.

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