Pa bill that toughens penalties for certain type of home invasion headed to full house

STATECAPITOL50473841-13054700

HARRISBURG, Pa. – A proposed bill that toughens the penalty for certain types of home invasion was voted out of committee today. It  and is headed to the full house for consideration by state lawmakers.

House Judiciary Committee Majority Chairman Ron Marsico (R-Dauphin) announced today that the bill was moving forward.

“Currently, the law does not distinguish those burglaries where force or threat of force is used from burglaries where force or threat of force isn’t used. This is a significant distinction that we thought should be looked at, which is why the committee hosted a hearing about this issue recently.  It was at this hearing, and in later discussions, that it was realized that the implementation of this enhanced public protection was necessary,” said Marsico.  “That is why I made it a priority to get it on the committee’s voting agenda as soon as possible.  And, I was pleased to see it pass unanimously through committee today.”

Senate Bill 1062 would require the adoption of a sentencing enhancement for home invasion burglaries, which is defined as burglaries where a person is present and the offender commits, attempts or threatens to commit a bodily injury.

In addition to Senate Bill 1062, several other bills moved through the committee today –

House Bill 1516 would amend the animal cruelty law to provide that leaving a dog or cat in an unattended vehicle during extreme heat conditions is a summary offense. The bill also gives first responders who break into a vehicle to rescue a dog or cat immunity for any damage caused to the vehicle. The first responder must try to find the owner or operator first, and must leave a note and get veterinary care for the animal after the rescue.

House Bill 2258 would provide penalties that can be imposed against local jurisdictions which promulgate local firearm control measures that are preempted under current state law.  The bill deters local jurisdictions from promulgating such illegal ordinances by providing that any party who provides written notice prior to filing suit and then successfully challenges one of these illegal local firearm ordinances will be entitled to reimbursement from the offending jurisdiction for their reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs to bring the lawsuit, and any loss of income suffered because of the illegal ordinance.

Senate Bill 1311 would bring the Commonwealth into compliance with the latest enactments of Congress with respect to the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) and the federal Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act.

The legislation will now go to the full House for consideration.