Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Entry Bill Undergoes Rewrite Police Officials Aiding Lawmaker

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Entry Bill Undergoes Rewrite Police Officials Aiding Lawmaker

Article excerpt

INDIANAPOLIS - A proposal aimed at assuring Indiana residents they sometimes can resist police officers entering their homes could see a key change sought by law enforcement groups, the House sponsor said Monday. Prosecutor and police groups have objected to a list of limited situations of when officers can legally enter a private home, which was included in the bill the Senate approved 45- 5 last month.

The Legislature has been working on a measure expanding self- defense rights following the public uproar over a state Supreme Court ruling last year that residents couldn't use force against officers even during an illegal entry.

Republican Rep. Jud McMillin of Brookville, who is sponsoring the bill, said he is working with law enforcement officials on a new version to be considered by a House committee on Wednesday. Changes from what the Senate approved would specify that residents are protected by the state's self-defense law if they resist police officers who are acting illegally, McMillin said.

"We also want to make sure that it does not create the incentive for people to think that it's OK to go out and use force against law enforcement officers," he said. The Senate version would allow residents to resist if the police officer wasn't identified or on official duty.

Officers would be allowed to enter homes when they have court warrants, are chasing a criminal suspect, believe someone inside is in danger or have permission from the residents. The state Supreme Court's police entry ruling brought Indiana law in line with most other states.

But about 250 people attended a Statehouse rally against the decision, contending it infringed on their constitutional rights and contradicted centuries of common law precedent regarding homeowners' rights and the limits of police power.

Republican Sen. …

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