Senator Volker Calls On Governor, Assembly To Enact Death Penalty Bill

William T. Stachowski

April 25, 2007

(Albany, N.Y.) With four police officers shot in New York in the last two weeks, including three in the last 24 hours, Senator Dale M. Volker and members of the Senate Majority Conference today called on Governor Spitzer to push the State Assembly to pass legislation that would enact the death penalty for people who kill police officers and a bill that would reinstate New York’s death penalty law. Yesterday, 97 Assembly Democrats voted against an amendment to enact the death penalty for people who kill police officers.

According to news reports this morning, two more State Troopers have been shot, and one killed, in the effort to apprehend 23 year old Travis Trimm, who reportedly shot Trooper Matthew Gombosi in Margaretville, Delaware County, yesterday. Trooper Gombosi was wearing a bullet proof vest at the time of the shooting. Last week, Utica police officer Thomas Lindsey was shot and killed during a traffic stop.

"Again and again we have been urging the Governor and his fellow Democrats in the State Assembly to pass legislation that would permit the Death Penalty for those who shoot and kill police officers," said Senator Dale M. Volker. However, all we continue to hear is rhetoric and political speeches from the Governor that does absolutely nothing to protect our law enforcement professionals. We need action now, and I urge the Governor to get back to Albany and persuade his fellow Democrats in the Assembly to pass legislation allowing for the Death Penalty for those who kill our law enforcement professionals."

Last year, the Senate passed a comprehensive bill that would put stronger penalties in place for criminals that target police officers. The bill includes stronger penalties for assault, murder and attempted murder of an officer, as well as increased penalties for possession of armor-piercing ammunition and the reinstatement of the death penalty for criminals who kill police officers. The Senate also passed legislation that would amend the state’s death penalty law to fix a provision that was ruled invalid by the state Court of Appeals. The Senate is prepared to pass these bills once again, in an effort to protect police and the public from violent criminals.



· New York City Detective Dillon Stewart, killed attempting to pull over a car in East Flatbush, November 28, 2005.

· New York City Detective Daniel Enchautegui, killed when he interrupted a burglary in progress, December 10, 2005.

· Police Officer Joseph D. Corr, New Hartford Police Department, killed while trying to apprehend jewelry store thieves, February 27, 2006.

· State Trooper Andrew J. Sperr, killed during a traffic stop of two bank robbers in Big Flats, Chemung County, March 1, 2006.

· State Trooper Craig J. Todeschini, killed near Syracuse in pursuit of a motorcycle driver who was fleeing him, April 23, 2006.

· State Trooper Joseph A. Longobardo, killed while searching for fugitive Bucky Phillips in Chautauqua County, August 31, 2006.

· New York City Auxiliary Police Officers Eugene Marshalik and Nicholas Pekearo, killed trying to apprehend a criminal who murdered a pizza shop employee in Greenwich Village, March 14, 2007.

· Utica Police Officer Thomas Lindsey, killed during a traffic stop, April 12, 2007.