Indiana senator wants tougher penalties for officer attacks

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indiana state senator says he wants tougher penalties for those convicted of attacking on- or off-duty police officers and their families.

Republican Sen. Jim Merritt of Indianapolis said Tuesday state law should be updated because of recent targeted violence against police officers. He cited the July arrest of a man accused of firing at least 15 shots into the home and squad car of an Indianapolis officer.

Merritt says that during next year’s legislative session, he’ll seek to allow more serious charges when an officer is the target of violence, even if that officer is off-duty.

Republican Rep. Wendy McNamara of Evansville said last week she’ll propose making it a felony to threaten a law enforcement agency because Indiana’s current intimidation statute covers only threats against individuals.

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