NC Senate passes bill to stiffen penalties for rioters

Capitol Report

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The North Carolina Senate passed a bill that increases penalties for rioting and looting in the state.

House Bill 805 would charge people with a felony for causing significant property damage or serious bodily harm during a riot.

The state Senate passed the bill 25-19.

“I saw firsthand the violence and destruction caused by rioters right here in downtown Raleigh last year,” Speaker Tim Moore (R) said. “What this bill does is enforce harsher penalties for the perpetrators of violence and looting, while preserving every North Carolinian’s right to protest peacefully.”

The bill comes a year after protests in downtown Raleigh turned violent and resulted in the destruction of property. Those against it said it goes against what they protested for last year, which is police accountability and criminal justice reform.

“This bill is a retaliation against the Black Lives Matter movement,” said Angaza Laughinghouse with the ACLU.

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