One day after FBI in Milwaukee foil planned mass shooting.
Madison – Today State Senator Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee) announced that today he is introducing a bill that will increase the penalties for hate crimes committed in our state.
Wisconsin’s hate crime law enhances criminal penalties when the perpetrator selects the victim due to the victim’s race, religion, color, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, or ancestry.
The penalty enhancers for hate crimes has not been changed in 28 years. They were passed 97-0 in the Assembly and 27-3 in the Senate. Governor Tommy Thompson signed this into law in April of 1988.
“Hate crime laws send a message that animosity toward a protected class is not an excuse for criminal behavior against specific people or property. Increasing the penalties for hate crimes in Wisconsin will reinforce the message that hate is no excuse,” said Carpenter.
Carpenter hoped that the events yesterday in Milwaukee, where the FBI foiled a planned mass shooting, will encourage his legislative colleagues to help enact this law.
Carpenter noted that yesterday’s events are not isolated. He noted this past year around our nation we saw nine African-American Christian church congregants in Charleston, South Carolina gunned down at a bible study due to their race. We saw attacks against Muslims and mosques after the ISIS inspired massacre in San Bernardino. In 2012 a White Supremacist gunman killed 6 people at a Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, and terrorized our community.