Includes bias-related graffiti in crime of aggravated harassment in the first degree; makes provisions authorizing the court in sentencing a person for bias-related graffiti to participate in a diversity training program and/or to suspend the driving license of such person; makes related provisions.
TITLE OF BILL:
An act to amend the penal law and the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to bias-related graffiti
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of this bill amends Section 240.31 of the Penal Law by adding a new subdivision 1-a. This subdivision adds the language "etches, paints, covers, draws upon or otherwise places a mark upon public or private property" to the crime of aggravated harassment in the first degree.
Section 2 amends the Penal Law by adding a new section 60.31, which allows the court to order the person convicted of the offense defined in Section 1 to participate in a diversity training program, at his/her expense.
Section 3 amends Section 502 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law by adding a new subdivision 8, which requires that the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles not issue a driver's license to any person convicted of the offense defined in Section 1 until such time as imposed by the sentencing court has elapsed.
Section 4 amends subdivision 3 of Section 510 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law by adding a new paragraph j-1, which allows the court to suspend for up to one year, the driver's license of any person convicted of the offense defined in Section 1.
This bill proposes enhanced penalties for bias-related graffiti in recognition of the particularly sensitive nature of such graffiti. Graffiti that is based upon hate should receive a tighter penalty. Enhancing the penalty will serve to reinforce the seriousness of this crime and prove to offenders that New York State does not tolerate bias in any form.
Currently, graffiti is treated as a Class A misdemeanor in Section 145.60 of the Penal Law. This legislation would include bias-related graffiti under the section of law that currently covers desecration of religious property. Under this bill, bias-related graffiti would be considered a Class E felony. This would increase the allowable penalty for bias-related graffiti from up to one year in jail under a Class A misdemeanor to a range of 1 1/3 to 4 years for a Class E felony at the discretion of the judge.
Recent incidents of bias-related graffiti in Westchester County exemplify the need to give prosecutors greater leverage in prosecuting such offenders.
03/16/09 REFERRED TO CODES 01/06/10 REFERRED TO CODES
This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 1842 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 13, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sens. OPPENHEIMER, DIAZ, PARKER, SAMPSON -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Codes AN ACT to amend the penal law and the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to bias-related graffiti THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 240.31 of the penal law is amended by adding a new subdivision 1-a to read as follows: 1-A. ETCHES, PAINTS, COVERS, DRAWS UPON OR OTHERWISE PLACES A MARK UPON PUBLIC OR PRIVATE PROPERTY; OR S 2. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 60.31 to read as follows: S 60.31 AUTHORIZED DISPOSITION; AGGRAVATED HARASSMENT IN THE FIRST DEGREE. WHEN A PERSON IS CONVICTED OF AN OFFENSE DEFINED IN SUBDIVISION ONE-A OF SECTION 240.31 OF THIS CHAPTER, OR OF AN ATTEMPT TO COMMIT SUCH AN OFFENSE, OR OF A LESSER INCLUDED OFFENSE, IN ADDITION TO ANY OTHER SENTENCE IMPOSED OR AS A CONDITION OF PROBATION OR CONDITIONAL DISCHARGE: (1) THE COURT MAY ORDER SUCH PERSON TO PARTICIPATE IN, AT HIS OWN EXPENSE, A DIVERSITY TRAINING PROGRAM THAT IS DESIGNED TO OVERCOME DISCRIMINATION, PREJUDICE AND INTOLERANCE, AND THAT PROMOTES COMMUNI- CATION, UNDERSTANDING AND RESPECT AMONG DIVERSE RACIAL, RELIGIOUS AND ETHNIC GROUPS AND/OR (2) MAY SUSPEND SUCH INDIVIDUAL'S DRIVER'S LICENSE OR PRIVILEGE TO DRIVE IN THIS STATE FOR A PERIOD OF UP TO ONE YEAR, OR, IN THE EVENT SUCH INDIVIDUAL DOES NOT HAVE A DRIVER'S LICENSE, THE COURT MAY DELAY THE GRANTING OF A DRIVER'S LICENSE FOR A PERIOD OF UP TO ONE YEAR. S 3. Section 502 of the vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new subdivision 8 to read as follows:EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD06223-01-1 S. 1842 2
8. EXCEPTIONS. NOTWITHSTANDING ANY OTHER PROVISION OF THIS SECTION, THE COMMISSIONER SHALL NOT ISSUE A DRIVER'S LICENSE TO ANY PERSON CONVICTED OF AN OFFENSE DEFINED IN SUBDIVISION ONE-A OF SECTION 240.31 OF THE PENAL LAW, OR OF AN ATTEMPT TO COMMIT SUCH AN OFFENSE, OR OF A LESSER INCLUDED OFFENSE, UNTIL SUCH TIME AS IMPOSED BY THE SENTENCING COURT HAS LAPSED. S 4. Subdivision 3 of section 510 of the vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new paragraph j-1 to read as follows: J-1. FOR A PERIOD UP TO ONE YEAR WHERE THE HOLDER HAS BEEN CONVICTED OF AN OFFENSE DEFINED IN SUBDIVISION ONE-A OF SECTION 240.31 OF THE PENAL LAW; S 5. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed- ing the date on which it shall have become a law.