‘Reform’ legislation could imperil people and communities

Springfield, IL. – 32nd District State Senator Craig Wilcox (R-Crystal Lake) issued the following statement on a massive law enforcement reform bill pending before the Illinois Legislature: 

“A potentially dangerous proposal will be considered by the lame duck legislature over the next few days, as the General Assembly wraps up the 101st. legislative session.  This measure potentially leaves our communities open to criminal acts and violence. As it is currently written, Senate Amendment #2 to House Bill 163;

  • Prohibits Pre-Trial Detention when an offender poses a danger to the Community At-Large.
  • Significantly limits offenders being detained, which will pose a significant risk to victims, witnesses to crime and the community at-large.
  • Impedes any law enforcement investigation, which will lead to less crimes being solved and no accountability for criminal perpetrators.
  • Severely limits accountability for accomplices to murder by amending the Felony Murder Rule.
  • Removes all due process protections for Police Officers.
  • Forces multiple unfunded mandates on police departments with threats of funding cuts if all the mandates are not met.  This will result in less money and more cuts to departments.

Issues surrounding law enforcement, communities and crime deserve a more thorough debate. Unfortunately, this proposal is being pushed through the process in a very hurried manner.  While proponents claim HB163-SA#2 came about because of recently highly-publicized interactions between a few police officers and individuals, the proposal generalizes all law enforcement, and is a blatant attack on our officers and their profession.  I oppose the measure as filed, and I believe all Republicans in the General Assembly do as well.” 

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