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Nassau County Passes Bill That Could Make Criticizing a Cop Punishable by $50,000

2 124 232
04.08.2021

Police

Billy Binion | 8.3.2021 5:11 PM

Police officers have difficult jobs, and, in some sense, are charged with protecting the public's right to free speech. It is with that in mind that the local legislature in Nassau County, New York, has passed a bill that could serve to limit the First Amendment rights of those who criticize cops.

"It is the judgment of this Legislature that the recent widespread pattern of physical attacks and intimidation directed at the police has undermined the civil liberties of the community at large," reads proposed local law No. 2021, introduced by Legislator Joshua A. Lafazan, an Independent. "Such violence is therefore a direct assault on the rule of law, every bit as much as suppression of speech by public authorities."

It would appear the irony was lost on the legislators who voted in favor of the bill, which would make police officers a protected class and allow them to sue those who "harass, menace, assault or injure an individual due to such individual's status as a first responder." A police officer who feels aggrieved under the law would be able to commence civil action for compensatory and punitive damages. Anyone found in violation would be subject to an additional $25,000 penalty, which would double if the alleged offender acted out........

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