New Jersey's 13th Legislative District

Senator Declan O'Scanlon

Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon Introduces Bill Targeting Those Who Commit Crimes of Domestic Violence During a State of Emergency

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Senator Declan O’Scanlon introduced legislation today that would give prosecutors a new tool to charge individuals suspected of domestic violence during a declared state of emergency.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon has introduced legislation that would give prosecutors a new tool to charge individuals suspected of domestic violence during a declared state of emergency. (©iStock)

“Unfortunately, with everyone being asked to stay home, we can anticipate an increase in domestic violence situations. There is a special place in hell for anyone who would cause harm to another while being asked to hunker down for the greater good,” said O’Scanlon. “This bill provides that an act of domestic violence or child endangerment committed by a person during a state of emergency may, at the discretion of the prosecutor, be charged one degree higher than the underlying offense.”

“Domestic violence is already a horrible thing. It is particularly despicable in times like these, and I hope that this proposal acts as a deterrent for those that might contemplate harming another in their shared space,” continued O’Scanlon.

If you or anyone you know is, or may be a victim of domestic violence, there are resources available to help.

“Our valiant first-responders are going to be busy enough in the weeks to come. We don’t need anyone unnecessarily adding to their workload. If a person commits an act of violence towards another person who is trying their best to adhere to the law during this crisis, someone who is trying to stay home for the public good, I want to make sure the prosecutor’s have the ability to throw the book at that person,” O’Scanlon concluded.

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