WEST CARTHAGE, N.Y. — Getting Mark’s Law passed led an ambitious agenda of 18 issues at the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York’s first legislative outreach meeting of the year, held Sunday afternoon at the West Carthage Fire Department, 61 High St.
The bill, named for Mark B. Davis, a Cape Vincent EMT who was shot and killed while responding to a call in 2009, hits close to home. His stepsister, Maricia L. Astafan, was a member of the department when the incident occurred, said First Assistant Chief Lawrence A. Hall Jr.
The comments below are member-generated and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of FireRescue1.com or its staff. If you cannot see comments, try disabling privacy and ad blocking plugins in your browser. All comments must comply with our Member Commenting Policy.
Greg MaloneyThursday, January 17, 2013 6:36:06 PMCould be that it has nothing to do with the murders of first-responders.
Tom KellyFriday, January 18, 2013 8:49:06 AMMaybe it will take the voices of 1 million firefighters banding together to push this through.
Laurie BattertonSaturday, January 19, 2013 8:29:41 AMmost diffently needs to become a law.
Brian P SlatterySaturday, January 19, 2013 9:43:20 AMIt boggles my mind that New York (or any other state) does not have such a provision in their laws to elevate the killing of an "on-duty first responder" to that of first-degree murder. I believe that when New York had (and used) the death penalty, killing a cop was always a capital offense... which might explain why LEOs are taking offense to efforts to expand the first degree murder statute there.
Being a native Delawarean (where the overwhelming majority of firefighters are (unpaid) volunteers, which used to include the overwhelming majority of EMTs), I took it for granted that other states did the same as we did here. First degree murder is defined in Title 11 of the Delaware Code (Crimes and Criminal Procedure), Chapter 5 (Specific Offenses), Sub-chapter II (Offenses Against the Person), Sub-part B (Acts causing Death), Subsection 636 (Murder in the first degree; class A felony).
The state legislature updated this part of the statute in 1974, adding a provision to make "recklessly" killing "a law enforcement officer, Corrections employee or fireman while such officer is in the lawful performance of his duties" a first degree murder offense.
After the LODD of Delaware City Fire Company Firefighter Michelle L. Smith in December 2008, this section was again updated/revised by the legislature. Iin early 2009 they amended the verbage to specifically include emergency medical technicians and paramedics to the list - which now makes it that "A person is guilty of murder in the first degree when:" "The person recklessly causes the death of a law-enforcement officer, corrections employee, fire fighter, paramedic, emergency medical technician, fire marshal, or fire police officer while such officer is in the lawful performance of duties".