Indiana Senate panel backs hate crimes bill

The Senate Public Policy Committee voted 9-1 on Monday to advance the bill to the full Senate.

Posted: Feb 18, 2019 1:45 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - A proposed Indiana hate crimes law has been endorsed by a state legislative committee.

The Senate Public Policy Committee voted 9-1 on Monday to advance the bill to the full Senate after hearing nearly three hours of public testimony from opponents and supporters. The bill would specifically allow judges to impose additional penalties against those who commit crimes fueled by biases regarding traits such as race, religion and sexual orientation.

Indiana is one of just five states without such a law and Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb has said the state is "long overdue" to adopt a hate crimes law.

Repeated efforts for an Indiana law have failed amid fierce opposition from conservatives who maintain it would unfairly create specially-protected classes of victims and wrongly restrict free speech.

Dozens of speakers supporting the bill included business, university and religious group leaders, along with Hispanic college students and transgender people who described threatening situations.

Article Comments

Fort Wayne
Broken Clouds
30° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 30°
Angola
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 34°
Huntington
Clear
29° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 29°
Decatur
Broken Clouds
30° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 30°
Van Wert
Clear
32° wxIcon
Hi: 45° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 32°
Rain/snow mix early Monday, but mostly dry day
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events