Senate Strengthens Penalties on Crimes Against LGBTQ and Disabled Coloradans

DENVER--Today, the Senate passed Senator Don Coram's, R-Montrose, bill expanding the definition of harassment to agree with Colorado's law on bias-motivated crimes. 

Under current law on bias-motivated crimes include actions based on real or perceived national origin, race, color, religion, ancestry, or gender.

An average of 1 in 3 teens is bullied or harassed, youth with disabilities are 10 times one likely to suffer harassment than a typical student.

House Bill 17-1188 adds physical or mental disabilities and sexual orientation to the categories in the harassment statue and raises those crimes from a class 3 misdemeanor to a class 1 misdemeanor.

"This bill is a commonsense fix that is long overdue," said Coram. "By adding LGBTQ and disabled Coloradans to the harassment statute, we can ensure that more Coloradans feel safe to come forward and report the crimes against them. Keeping our communities safe is an ongoing priority that requires a constant commitment to every single Coloradan. Today, the Senate stood with some of Colorado's most vulnerable."

House Bill 1188 will be heard once more in the Senate. 

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commented 2017-04-10 12:34:49 -0600 · Flag
So, how does one determine that motivation is biased? And why is that crime punishable to a greater extent than if not determined to be “biased”? Sad to see that this passed by a Republican-controlled Senate.
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