Lawmakers OK bill protecting off-duty police officers

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The Arizona Senate has passed legislation that would specify aggravated assault against off-duty police officers are crimes equal to assaulting on-duty officers.

The proposal by sponsor Republican Sen. Steve Smith would mandate calling the act the Blue Lives Matter Law. Smith has said directly assaulting officers should not be tolerated on any level.

Senate Bill 1366 notes aggravated assault against police officers includes those that are not "on duty or engaged in the execution of any official duties."

Democratic Rep. Reginald Bolding has called the measure's label disrespectful and said the bill is an affront to issues concerning the Black Lives Matter movement.

The Senate's 21-9 vote Tuesday sends the legislation to Ducey's desk because the House approved it on a 34-25 vote earlier this month. 

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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