Dreeshen’s Bill seeking harsher sentences for personating police stands at Third Reading

March 24, 2011
On October 1, 2010, I introduced a Private Members’ Bill to the House of Commons. Bill C-576 is an Act to Amend the Criminal Code (personating a peace officer).

The purpose of this Bill is to require judges during sentencing to consider personating a peace officer to be an aggravating circumstance if it is done for the purpose of committing another crime.  Personating a peace officer is currently punishable up to a maximum of five years imprisonment under Section 130 of the Criminal Code.  Aggravating circumstances can lead judges to impose longer sentences up to the maximum.

On February 9, 2011, my Bill received unanimous consent from all Members of the House of Commons at Second Reading.  It was referred it to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, which also approved the Bill by unanimous consent on March 2, 2011.  The Bill will now return to House for Report Stage and Third Reading, scheduled for April 15, 2011.

This Bill is about sentencing. It speaks to the need for tougher penalties for this particular crime.  Victims must be assured that there will be serious consequences for criminals who hurt them, and we need to preserve the trust and respect that citizens have for real police officers.

MPs from all parties have voiced their support for Bill C-576.  I am grateful for the outpouring of support that I have received from my colleagues.  However, there is still work to be done.  I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues in Parliament to pass this Bill.  When a general election is called, all Bills die on the Order Paper.  If Bill C-576 dies on the Order Paper, I intend to reintroduce the Bill if re-elected.

The complete text of the Bill can be downloaded at: http://www2.parl.gc.ca/content/hoc/Bills/403/Private/C-576/C-576_1/C-576_1.PDF