Friends,

The average citizen is well aware that our State is becoming more dangerous. Baltimore City is again on track to achieving another record homicide rate; two children, 10 & 12 were shot this past week as collateral damage from the wild west gun battles that are all too common on city streets. Prince George’s County saw 16 murders in January 2021 compared with just 6 murders in January 2020.  

Unfortunately, most members of the General Assembly are not the average citizen. While citizens want more police protection so they can be safe in their homes, schools, and jobs, the progressive politicians in the General Assembly are busy trying to appease radical, police hating, activists armed with lots of cash.  Here are some of their goals:

-       Remove all of the School Resource Officers (uniformed police officers assigned to each of our schools) from all schools, K-12.  This program has been very popular throughout Harford County, acclaimed by students, parents, and teachers for increasing student safety and providing ample opportunities for mentoring and sharing of ideas.   Bill supporters want to erect a wall between students and law enforcement. Senate Bill 245. 

-       Make it illegal for off-duty police officers to carry their concealed handguns while voting. Off-duty police can now carry their service pistols at all times so this would be an exception.  Bill supporters actually argued that, if a terrorist attacks voters at a polling station, an off-duty officer should escape, run to their car, retrieve their firearm, and re enter the building to confront the shooter. They say the mere knowledge that an off-duty police officer might have a pistol under his or her jacket while voting would discourage the public from voting; somehow the same does not apply to a uniformed officer carrying openly and did not discourage record turnout in the last election. I argued in opposition that the polls are a soft target for those bent on disrupting our political system and that armed off-duty police officers provide us with countless hours of uncompensated public safety for which we should all be most grateful. Senate Bill 10.

-       Discourage people from calling the police unless they have sufficient cause to believe a crime is being committed. This bill would convert “see something – say something” to “see something – shut up.” If you call the police without sufficient cause, you could be sued for $10,000, plus emotional damages and punitive damages. How quickly we have forgotten the lessons of 9/11/2001. Senate Bill363.

-       Prohibit Maryland law enforcement personnel from cooperating in any way with INS/ICE when state officials have in their jails individuals requested by the Feds on an INS detainer. Police would even be required to assist prisoners in avoiding INS/ICE apprehension by notifying prisoners that the INS/ICE is looking for them, providing all information about the INS/ICE inquiry, and releasing prisoners without notifying the INS/ICE.  This bill is modeled after Montgomery County's code provisions that have made that county the highest in the nation for MS-13 gang violence which often targets young people with rape, beheadings, and shootings. Senate Bill 88.

-       Remove police authority to stop and question an individual when the officer has a reasonable suspicion the individual has committed or is about to commit a crime. Officers’ authority to stop and question would be limited to those cases where the officer has probable cause to make an arrest. This would put Maryland crime fighters at a serious disadvantage, compared with law enforcement nationwide, in their efforts to combat violent crime. Senate Bill 589.

-       Disallow Johns Hopkins University from establishing a campus police. While state owned universities outside of Baltimore City are policed by campus police, the anti-police crowd does not want the students in Johns Hopkins’ downtown campus to enjoy the same level of security because they think policing is not the solution to the rampant violent crime in the city. SB 276.  

I will continue the fight against these terrible bills that threaten the safety of all Marylanders.
 
To share your views on any topics at anytime I can be reached by email at bob.cassilly@senate.state.md.us. You can also follow the hearings and voting online at www.mgaleg.maryland.gov.

Bob Cassilly 
Senator, District 34