COLUMBUS – State Senator Tim Schaffer (R-Lancaster) announced today that a bill enhancing protections for Ohio’s first responders is heading to the Governor for signature.
Senate Bill 16 would warrant a possible 4th-degree felony for assault of an emergency responder while on or off duty. This same penalty would be extended to protect their families while off duty. This only applies if the attacker knew of and committed the offense because of their profession as a first responder.
“Over the past year, we have seen how our nation’s first responders and their families have been the targets of intimidation, menacing, and assault,” Schaffer said. “As a legislative body, we must ensure that the men and women who bravely serve our communities are protected from those who vilify, target, and attack them.”
Additionally, Senate Bill 16t makes it a 1st-degree misdemeanor for obstructing a public passageway, if done to prevent an emergency vehicle from responding to or exiting an emergency.
For more information about Senate Bill 16, click here.