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Oregon lawmaker seeks higher penalties for wearing mask during riot

Oregon Legislature
KTVZ file

 SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) -- State Rep. Sherrie Sprenger, R-Scio, has introduced a bill to increase penalties for riot crimes if a person is wearing a mask to conceal their identity during the commission of the crime.

“In recent years, we have seen an alarming increase of violent riots in Oregon,” Sprenger said. “As a former sheriff’s deputy, I know how important it is for law enforcement to be able to accurately and swiftly identify those who are involved in inciting these riots and committing crimes.”

Former Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw called for a similar policy last summer following a series of violent riots perpetrated by groups like Antifa. With shrinking police resources, responding to riot events has become increasingly difficult throughout the state, the lawmaker said.

About 15 states and some local governments across the country have adopted some type of anti-mask law. The bill introduced by Sprenger would not outlaw masks, but would increase penalties if a person is found to be concealing their face with the intent to riot.

Article Topic Follows: Crime And Courts

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