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LEGAL UPDATES

 

This page contains the current year’s legal cases and statutes that are relevant to municipal police officers throughout the Commonwealth, as these cases have a direct impact on how police officers perform their day-to-day duties.

Summer 2017: The registration plate design has been updated. 

02/01/17: Act 108 of 2016 (10/4/16), SB 1155, PN 1998 Special Armed Forces license plate

01/03/17: Act 158 of 2016 (11/4/16), SB 1062, PN 1679; New subsection of burglary 18 Pa.C.S. § 3502(a)(1)(i); Burglary of occupied residence with commission, attempt or threat to commit a bodily injury crime;  Bodily injury crime defined: "Bodily injury crime." As follows: (1) An act, attempt or threat to commit an act which would constitute a misdemeanor or felony under the following: Chapter 25 (relating to criminal homicide). Chapter 27 (relating to assault). Chapter 29 (relating to kidnapping). Chapter 31 (relating to sexual offenses). Section 3301 (relating to arson and related offenses). Chapter 37 (relating to robbery). Chapter 49 Subch. B (relating to victim and witness intimidation).;  (2) The term includes violations of any protective order issued as a result of an act related to domestic violence;  No enhanced grading of offense – await promulgation of sentencing guidelines enhancement

01/02/17:  Act 131 of 2018 (11/3/18), HB 1118, PN 4066; Independent Counsel Law; Relevant pages: Pages 43-44: DA may refer case to contiguous county colleague, Page 48: Covered persons with respect to Attorney General; Page 83: Duties of State Police

01/02/17: Act 134 of 2016 (11/3/16), HB 1496, PN 3918: Enhanced penalty for violation of 18 Pa.C.S. § 6105 (from F2 to F1); Previous conviction “at the time of a commission of a violation” of subsection (a); Current “physical possession or control of a firearm whether visible, concealed about the person, or within the person’s reach.”; Current language prohibits: “shall not possess, use, control, sell, transfer or manufacture or obtain a license to possess, use, control, sell, transfer or manufacture a firearm”

01/01/17: House Bill 1154 Police officers will not be able to physically view a sticker to determine validation status.

11/03/16: Act 142 of 2016 (11/3/16), HB 2058, PN 3428; Paramedic may draw blood for police in cases involving suspected DUS/DUI, Homicide by vehicle while DUI, Aggravated Assault while DUI and DUI; Paramedic not a necessary chain of custody witness if witnessing police officer testifies; Paramedic’s services recoverable as court costs (effective 2/1/17)
  
(Miscellaneous effective dates): Act 165 of 2016 (11/4/16), HB 2025, PN 4069 Addition to definition of abandoned vehicle;  Temporary registration cards are valid for 60 days; Amendment to Section 1332(b) – Obscuring registration plate; May not inhibit any automated enforcement system or electronic toll collection system;  New subsection (b)(4) prohibits obscuring which “inhibits the visibility of the issuing jurisdiction” (violation of subsection is a $100 fine); Registration plate and card may be seized for suspension arising from unpaid tolls in this   Commonwealth or in a reciprocal jurisdiction as provided for in new Section 1380; Hazardous materials endorsement not required for certain commercial drivers;  Conviction for violating Section 3316 (pertaining to texting) now joins Sections 3325 and 3327    as authorizing an additional 5 year sentence enhancement to the otherwise applicable sentence for homicide by vehicle or aggravated assault by vehicle (eff. 1/3/17)
 


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