Alabama House of Representatives pass two bills bolstering public safety

MONTGOMERY, Ala.- This week, the Alabama House of Representatives passed bills that allow police to arrest a person trespassing on school grounds without obtaining a warrant and making cellphone providers in the state give cellphone location data to law enforcement when they ask.

The bill relating to warrantless arrests at schools can be applied at any educational institution. The bill’s sponsor is Rep. Bill Poole (R-Tuscaloosa). Poole said that this is the third straight year that he has introduced this bill. The previous two years, it did not pass the senate.

The bill passed out of the house by a vote of 94-1.

Chief of the Auburn Police Division, Paul Register said that officers will not arrest folks that have legitimate business on a campus.

“It’s just another piece of the puzzle of making all of our school campuses safe,” Chief Register said. “This is just another step in that, giving the officers more ability to take a situation on their own, recognize that the crime is being occurred and address it immediately and get that person away from the campus so that there is not any kind of delays.”

The other bill passed in the house requires cellphone providers in Alabama to give law enforcement cellphone location data in situations where someone’s safety or life may be in danger.

Lee County Sheriff, Jay Jones said that this is great legislation that would not be abused.

“This would go directly to protect individuals in the event they are a victim of some type of kidnapping, some type of circumstance of abduction,” Sheriff Jones said. “It’s just common sense. It would provide critical information as quickly as possible to law enforcement authorities in order to respond to that emergency and hopefully save lives.”

Both bills will head to the senate for debate.


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