NAACP Legal Defense Fund Urges House Judiciary Committee to Oppose the Proposed Thin Blue Line Bill

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) sent a letter today to the House Judiciary Committee urging members to oppose the Thin Blue Line Act, H.B. 115, which would add the killing or attempted killing of a law enforcement officer as an aggravating factor in determining whether a death sentence is justified.  While LDF supports efforts to advance responsible policing practices that ensure the safety and wellness of both law enforcement and the communities they serve, H.B. 115 is an ill-advised and duplicative proposal that will not accomplish this goal.  Monique Dixon, Deputy Director of Policy and Senior Counsel at LDF, issued the following statement:

“H.B. 115 needlessly duplicates federal and state laws that already impose serious penalties on persons convicted of crimes against law enforcement. Our nation’s use of the death penalty is already fraught with racial disparities, and this legislation will only serve to worsen the imbalance.  At a time when public support for the death penalty is at its lowest point in decades, Congress should reject this unnecessary bill and focus on substantive policing reform.”

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Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.