Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Proposed Bill No. 10

 

January Session, 2017

 

LCO No. 333

 

*00333*

Referred to Committee on JUDICIARY

 

Introduced by:

 

SEN. LOONEY, 11th Dist.

 

AN ACT CONCERNING THE STRENGTHENING OF LAWS AGAINST HATE CRIMES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

That the general statutes be amended to strengthen laws against hate crimes, including, but not limited to (1) making it a class D felony, instead of the current class A misdemeanor pursuant to section 53a-181l of the general statutes, to either carry out or threaten to carry out in a manner that creates reasonable belief that the threatened act will occur, the damage, destruction or defacing of any real or personal property with malice and specific intent to intimidate or harass a group of persons because of the actual or perceived race, religion, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity or expression of such group of persons, regardless of the level of direct economic impact caused by such property damage, (2) establishing a minimum amount that individuals convicted of a hate crime be required to pay as a fine, and requiring that the amount of all fines assessed against such defendants be deposited into an account, permissible uses of which may include programming to increase community awareness and reporting of crimes motivated by bigotry or bias and providing diversity awareness programming, (3) creating a state-wide Hate Crimes Advisory Council, funded in whole or in part by the fines assessed against individuals convicted of hate crimes, that shall meet at least quarterly and be within the Office of the Chief State's Attorney for administrative purposes only, with a composition including, but not limited to, representatives from said office, state and local law enforcement agencies, municipalities, organizations committed to decreasing hate crimes and improving diversity awareness, and the Connecticut Bar Association and other legal organizations, which council shall encourage and coordinate programs to increase community awareness and reporting of crimes motivated by bigotry or bias and to combat such crimes, and to make recommendations to the legislature concerning such crimes, and (4) creating and publicizing a hot line for reporting incidents of harassment or intimidation of minority groups in the state.

Statement of Purpose:

To strengthen laws against hate crimes.