Bill Text: TX SB1138 | 2017-2018 | 85th Legislature | Comm Sub

NOTE: There are more recent revisions of this legislation. Read Latest Draft
Bill Title: Relating to the creation of the blue alert system to aid in the apprehension of an individual suspected of killing or causing serious bodily injury to a law enforcement officer.

Spectrum: Slight Partisan Bill (Republican 63-24)

Status: (Passed) 2017-06-01 - Effective on 9/1/17 [SB1138 Detail]

Download: Texas-2017-SB1138-Comm_Sub.html
 
 
  By: Whitmire, et al. S.B. No. 1138
 
  (Krause, Dean, Guillen, Villalba, Blanco, et al.)
 
   
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to the creation of the blue alert system to aid in the
  apprehension of an individual suspected of killing or causing
  serious bodily injury to a law enforcement officer.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Chapter 411, Government Code, is amended by
  adding Subchapter P to read as follows:
  SUBCHAPTER P. BLUE ALERT SYSTEM
         Sec. 411.441.  DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:
               (1)  "Alert system" means the statewide blue alert
  system that is developed and implemented under this subchapter.
               (2)  "Law enforcement agency" means a law enforcement
  agency with jurisdiction over the investigation of an alleged
  offense that resulted in the death or serious bodily injury of a law
  enforcement officer.
               (3)  "Law enforcement officer" means a person who is a
  peace officer under Article 2.12, Code of Criminal Procedure, or a
  person who is a federal law enforcement officer, as defined by 5
  U.S.C. Section 8331(20).
               (4)  "Serious bodily injury" has the meaning assigned
  by Section 1.07, Penal Code.
         Sec. 411.442.  BLUE ALERT SYSTEM. With the cooperation of
  the Texas Department of Transportation, the office of the governor,
  and other appropriate law enforcement agencies in this state, the
  department shall develop and implement a statewide blue alert
  system to be activated to aid in the apprehension of an individual
  suspected of killing or causing serious bodily injury to a law
  enforcement officer.
         Sec. 411.443.  ADMINISTRATION. (a)  The director is the
  statewide coordinator of the alert system.
         (b)  The director shall adopt rules and issue directives as
  necessary to ensure proper implementation of the alert system. The
  rules and directives must include:
               (1)  the procedures to be used by a law enforcement
  agency to verify whether:
                     (A)  an individual is suspected of killing or
  causing serious bodily injury to a law enforcement officer and is
  not yet apprehended; and
                     (B)  the activation of the alert system would aid
  in the apprehension of that individual;
               (2)  a description of the circumstances under which a
  law enforcement agency is required to report a missing suspect to
  the department; and
               (3)  the procedures to be used by an individual or
  entity to report information about a missing suspect to designated
  media outlets in Texas.
         (c)  The director shall prescribe forms for use by law
  enforcement agencies in requesting activation of the alert system.
         Sec. 411.444.  DEPARTMENT TO RECRUIT PARTICIPANTS. The
  department shall recruit public and commercial television and radio
  broadcasters, private commercial entities, state or local
  governmental entities, the public, and other appropriate persons to
  assist in developing and implementing the alert system.
         Sec. 411.445.  STATE AGENCIES. (a)  A state agency
  participating in the alert system shall:
               (1)  cooperate with the department and assist in
  developing and implementing the alert system; and
               (2)  establish a plan for providing relevant
  information to its officers, investigators, or employees, as
  appropriate, once the alert system has been activated.
         (b)  In addition to its duties as a state agency under
  Subsection (a), the Texas Department of Transportation shall
  establish a plan for providing relevant information to the public
  through an existing system of dynamic message signs located across
  the state.
         Sec. 411.446.  NOTIFICATION TO DEPARTMENT. (a)  A law
  enforcement agency that receives notice of an individual who is
  suspected of killing or causing serious bodily injury to a law
  enforcement officer and who has not yet been apprehended shall:
               (1)  confirm the accuracy of the information; and
               (2)  if the agency believes the missing suspect poses a
  threat to other law enforcement officers and to the public, provide
  notice to the department.
         (b)  A law enforcement agency providing notice to the
  department under Subsection (a) shall include with that notice a
  detailed description of the missing suspect and, if applicable, any
  available portion of the license plate number of a motor vehicle
  being used by the suspect.
         Sec. 411.447.  ACTIVATION OF BLUE ALERT SYSTEM. (a)  When a
  law enforcement agency notifies the department under Section
  411.446, the department shall confirm the accuracy of the
  information and, if confirmed, immediately issue an alert through
  the alert system in accordance with department rules.
         (b)  In issuing the alert, the department shall send the
  alert to designated media outlets in Texas. Following receipt of
  the alert, participating radio stations and television stations and
  other participating media outlets may issue the alert at designated
  intervals to assist in locating the missing suspect.
         (c)  The department shall also send the alert to:
               (1)  any appropriate law enforcement agency;
               (2)  the Texas Department of Transportation; and
               (3)  a state agency described by Section 411.445.
         Sec. 411.448.  CONTENT OF ALERT. The alert must include:
               (1)  all appropriate information that is provided by
  the law enforcement agency under Section 411.446 and that may lead
  to the apprehension of the missing suspect; and
               (2)  a statement instructing any person with
  information related to the missing suspect to contact a law
  enforcement agency.
         Sec. 411.449.  TERMINATION OF ALERT SYSTEM. (a)  The
  director shall terminate any activation of the alert system with
  respect to a particular missing suspect not later than the earlier
  of the date on which:
               (1)  the missing suspect is apprehended;
               (2)  the department receives evidence that the missing
  suspect has left this state; or
               (3)  the department determines that the alert system
  will no longer aid in the apprehension of the missing suspect.
         (b)  A law enforcement agency that apprehends a missing
  suspect who is the subject of an alert under this subchapter shall
  notify the department as soon as possible that the missing suspect
  has been apprehended.
         SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2017.
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