Cracking Down On Crime

By Gabe Osterhout

July 22, 2010 Updated Jan 3, 2006 at 5:18 PM EDT

In Binghamton, a man's murdered, shot in the head on Thorp Street.
A drive-by shooting wounded a man on Beethoven Street and 5 bystanders were wounded by shots outside a night club on Court
And a pregnant teenager was shot at on Tudor Street
The New York Legislature will take aim at gun crimes with the so called Hero's Law.
"They're geared to make the streets of the cities and villages of New York safer and also to add enhanced protection for law enforcement officers," says Binghamton Mayor Richard Bucci.
The law's designed to help prevent tragedies like the shooting death of Broome Deputy Kevin Tarsia, who was killed with stolen guns.
It would strengthen penalties against those who have and sell illegal handguns into New York.
Right now, it's a misdemeanor to possess up to 20 illegal handguns.
"This legislation turns that into having 20 to 3. Those 3 handguns you will be charged with a violent felony," says Gary Finch of the NYS 123rd Assembly.
"These handguns also pose a tremendous threat to police officers who have to make a traffic stop, who has to respond to a domestic incident, who has to respond to a gang problem and New York State law is just not adequate," says Broome District Attorney Gerald Mollen.
The Governor also wants to increase the punishment for specifically attacking a police officer.
A person who kills an officer would be eligible for the death penalty.
"We ask men and women to put their lives on the line daily to protect our communities. We have an obligation to provide them all the tools we can to do their jobs and also to provide as much protection as possible," says Mollen.
Governor George Pataki interrupted the legislature's holiday vacation to call them back to Albany to pass these new laws on Wednesday.
The special session of the New York Legislature comes just two weeks after two New York City police officers were shot and killed by people with illegal guns.

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