MACHESNEY PARK, Ill. (WTVO) — State Rep. John Cabello (R-Machesney Park) on Tuesday filed new legislation that would reinstate the death penalty in Illinois.
If passed, the death penalty would be allowed if a police officer or fireman are killed in the line of duty; a person is convicted of murdering two or more people; the victim of a murder is under the age of 12; or if the murder takes place at a religious institution.
The death penalty was abolished in Illinois in 2011, by Gov. Pat Quinn.
Twelve people were executed by the state between 1976 and 2011.
Cabello’s public safety package of bills would also repeal the SAFE-T Act, which eliminates cash bail.
Also included in the legislation are provisions for municipalities to provide health insurance to police and fire personnel after their retirement.
“The safety of our communities is of the utmost importance, and this legislation is aimed at ensuring that our law enforcement officers and firefighters have the support they need to carry out their duties and keep our communities safe,” said Cabello. “Police and Fire Departments across Illinois have had difficulty with the recruitment and retention of qualified individuals, and this bill not only helps attract quality candidates, but also helps to preserve the quality of first responders for years to come.”
The SAFE-T Act was introduced by the Illinois Black Caucus as part of Black legislators’ response to the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Many Illinois law enforcement agencies have warned the act will embolden criminals and make it harder for police to keep offenders off the streets.
Although the state created a new law, the INFORM Act, which enforces the crime of Organized Retail Theft, many retailers have voiced concerns that theft is making harder for them to meet operating costs.
The last U.S. Census showed that 110,127 people left the state between July 2021 and July 2022.