Public Comments for: HB366 - Assault and battery; penalties when committed against certain persons.
Last Name: Champion Organization: Virginia Autism Project Locality: Springfield

Please VOTE YES on HB366. This is an important bill for the disability community and will help keep ID/DD individuals out of jail for unintended assaults (spitting, scratching, hitting) a law enforcement officer when they are in a fight or flight panic attack. Individuals with complex behaviors are not always able to control their bodily responses when they are in crisis. They should not be charged with a felony when they are unable to control their response due to their disability. Many families live in fear of having to call for assistance since if they do call, that means their loved one is in crisis and they need help. But that call could result in their loved one being charged with a felony. This is in NO WAY encouraging assaults on law enforcement but rather recognizing that someone with ID/DD can be in a behavioral crisis and not be able to control their responses. Having a felony conviction means their social service supports are at risk and they would not be able to receive food stamps or other social services. This would place them further in crisis. Please support HB366 and vote YES. thank you.

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