Ohio Considers 'Blue Alert' Warning System

Tuesday, 22 Nov 2011 03:11 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Ohio may soon issue “Blue Alerts” to help capture suspects who have seriously injured or killed law enforcement officers, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. State Attorney General Mike DeWine announced his support for the legislation issued by state Sens. Gayle Manning and Tom Patton, which will create a statewide system.
 
Patton’s son was a Cleveland Heights police who died in the line of duty last year.
 
Under the law, a Blue Alert would be sent over broadcast systems to give information about suspects after an officer is injured or killed, much like Amber Alerts that go out when a child is missing.
 
Alabama, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Virginia already use Blue Alerts.
 
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, in May introduced legislation to create a nationwide Blue Alert system.
 
“We can’t prevent every instance of violence against law enforcement officials, but we can do something to track down and apprehend those who engage in these heinous crimes,” Brown said.
 
“We ask so much of our police officers — from investigating violent crimes to patrolling dangerous neighborhoods,” he continued. “It’s time to give back by setting up a means of protecting them and bringing their assailants to justice.”

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