Oct 08, 2016
In the New Jersey legislature sits a Bill, NJ A3461 that creates penalties for using mobile applications to aid in commission of crime. The Bill is currently in the Law and Public Safety Committee.
Of the many apps ripe for abuse in committing crimes, Waze, from Google, is among the most immediate threats. Waze is a cop tracker that facilitates sharing the location of police on social media and was linked to the murders of NYPD officers, Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu. Their killer had shared a screen grab on social media of the police tracker hours before he walked up to their parked patrol car and executed them in broad daylight by shooting both officers in the head and upper body multiple times. Neither officer was able to draw a weapon.
Defenders of Waze have argued freedom of information. This Bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Ronald Dancer does not prohibit use of cop trackers but adds an additional charge when a cop tracker or other app is used in a crime. The committee Chair is Daniel R. Benson AsmBenson@njleg.org with Joe Danielsen AsmDanielsen@njleg.org as Vice Chair.
Take action to support passage of this important law to protect New Jersey police, public safety and to send a message to others states to take action as well.
Language of A3461:
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. a. A person who knowingly uses a mobile application to facilitate the commission of a criminal offense is guilty of a crime.
b. An offense under this section constitutes a crime of the fourth degree if the underlying offense is a disorderly persons offense. Otherwise, an offense under this section shall be classified one degree higher than the underlying offense.
c. Notwithstanding the provisions of N.J.S.2C:1-8, a conviction under this section shall not merge with a conviction for the underlying offense. Nor shall a conviction for the underlying offense merge with a conviction under this section. Nothing contained in this act shall prohibit the court from imposing an extended term of imprisonment pursuant to N.J.S.2C:43-7; nor shall this be construed to preclude or limit a prosecution or conviction of any person for conspiracy under N.J.S.2C:5-2, or any prosecution or conviction for any offense.
d. As used in this section:
"Mobile application" means a program downloaded onto and used in conjunction with a mobile electronic communication device, and available through multiple software platforms.
"Mobile electronic communication device" means any mobile device capable of communication or other transmission of information and includes, but is not limited to, a cellular telephone, wireless tablet, or other device with Internet capability, or other wireless communication device.
2. This act shall take effect immediately.