Senate votes to create a new federal offense: assaulting servicemembers or their families or damaging their property due to their military status
As reported by the Army Times here, the Senate voted 92-0 last night to amend the DOD Authorization Act to create a new federal offense: “knowingly assault[ing] or batter[ing] a United States serviceman or an immediate family member of a United States serviceman, or . . . knowingly destroy[ing] or injur[ing] the property of such serviceman or immediate family member, on account of the military service of that serviceman or status of that individual as a United States serviceman, or . . . attempt[ing] or conspir[ing] to do so.” The text of the amendment as originally proposed is available here. Sponsor Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) called the legislation “the soldiers’ amendment.” Those who are subject to the UCMJ are ineligible to be charged under the new offense.