New York Senate passes bill increasing penalty for killing first responders


The New York State Senate today passed a bill (S.4717B), sponsored by Senator Patricia Ritchie (R-C, Huevelton) to make the killing of emergency first responders first degree murder, punishable by the stiffest penalty allowed by law – life without parole.

The bill, known as “Mark’s Law,” was introduced in memory of Mark Davis, the emergency medical technician who was shot to death while responding to a call for help in Cape Vincent on January 30, 2009.  Mark’s family, including his parents Marsha and Larry Dickinson, his brother Michael and his sister Maricia Astafan, who just became an EMT first-responder,  were in the Senate Chamber to witness passage of the legislation.

“Today is a bittersweet day for the friends, family members and former colleagues of Mark Davis,” said Senator Ritchie.  “The passage of this bipartisan bill honors his sacrifice, and sends a strong message to anyone who might think of hurting the people who give their lives to protect us each and every day.”

Read more about the bill’s passage here.