FBI agents push to make ‘domestic terrorism’ a federal crime

Washington D.C.

Federal investigators call the mass shootings in Dayton and El Paso acts of 'domestic terrorism'

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Federal investigators are referring to the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton as acts of “domestic terrorism” but “domestic terrorism” is not currently a federal offense.

Many are now calling on lawmakers to make domestic terrorism a crime though others fear doing so will hurt communities of color.

“I’m very glad that the Department of Justice and the FBI are treating this as domestic terrorism,” said Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX).

The FBI Agents Association wants Congress to make domestic terrorism a federal crime.

“We need to make sure we do all we can to deter individuals and hold accountable any individuals in the United States who are seeking to bring terror against our fellow citizens,” said Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA).

Representative Swalwell supports the effort.

“I’m concerned right now minorities are being targeted by white nationalists,” he said.

Civil rights organizations worry a federal domestic terrorism law could hurt communities of color. Nadia Aziz from the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law said the criminal justice system is inherently biased. She pointed to drug laws as an example.

“There’s no evidence that black communities and communities of color use drugs any more frequently than other communities, yet they are alwasy the ones that are targeted,” Aziz said.

Aziz argued the country doesn’t need a new domestic terrorism law.

“There’s over 50 charges — I think maybe even 57 charges — that can be used.”

She said hate crime laws cover acts of domestic terror and the El Paso shooting is already being investigated as a hate crime.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Top Videos

Coronavirus cases in Florida surge past 6,300

Thumbnail for the video titled "Coronavirus cases in Florida surge past 6,300"

Tampa Bay restaurants adjust to “survive” during coronavirus pandemic

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tampa Bay restaurants adjust to “survive” during coronavirus pandemic"

Coronavirus; More than 5,000 classes at USF transition to online

Thumbnail for the video titled "Coronavirus; More than 5,000 classes at USF transition to online"

Let's boogie! Local dance studio offers FREE virtual lessons during coronavirus

Thumbnail for the video titled "Let's boogie! Local dance studio offers FREE virtual lessons during coronavirus"

Tuesday Midday Weather Update

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tuesday Midday Weather Update"

Attorneys call arrest of Tampa megachurch pastor after packed Sunday services "unconstitutional"

Thumbnail for the video titled "Attorneys call arrest of Tampa megachurch pastor after packed Sunday services "unconstitutional""

St. Petersburg parks open, for now

Thumbnail for the video titled "St. Petersburg parks open, for now"

Tampa Bay area workers continue to be unable to file for unemployment benefits through state

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tampa Bay area workers continue to be unable to file for unemployment benefits through state"

Sarasota County reports cases of COVID-19 at senior care facilities

Thumbnail for the video titled "Sarasota County reports cases of COVID-19 at senior care facilities"

Why are Floridians waiting up to 11 days for COVID-19 test results?

Thumbnail for the video titled "Why are Floridians waiting up to 11 days for COVID-19 test results?"
More Local News

Trending Stories

get the app

News App

Weather App

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss