Crime victims; no law-enforcement officer shall inquire into immigration status of victim of crime. (SB1436)

Introduced By

Sen. Janet Howell (D-Reston) with support from 18 copatrons, whose average partisan position is:

Those copatrons are Del. Dave Albo (R-Springfield), Del. Morgan Griffith (R-Salem), Del. Manoli Loupassi (R-Richmond), Del. Bobby Mathieson (D-Virginia Beach), Del. Ken Melvin (D-Portsmouth), Del. Tom Rust (R-Herndon), Del. Steve Shannon (D-Vienna), Del. Vivian Watts (D-Annandale), Sen. John Edwards (D-Roanoke), Sen. Mark Herring (D-Leesburg), Sen. Mamie Locke (D-Hampton), Sen. Louise Lucas (D-Portsmouth), Sen. Henry Marsh (D-Richmond), Sen. Joe Morrissey (D-Richmond), Sen. Toddy Puller (D-Mount Vernon), Sen. Dick Saslaw (D-Springfield), Sen. Ken Stolle (R-Virginia Beach), Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple (D-Arlington)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Crime victims; immigration status. Provides that no law-enforcement officer or other agent of state or local government shall, when investigating a crime, inquire into the immigration status of any person who reports that he is the victim of the crime or is the parent or guardian of a minor victim, or is a cooperating witness in the criminal investigation or is the parent or guardian of a minor witness. The bill does not prohibit a law-enforcement officer from inquiring into the immigration status of a victim or witness who has been arrested or charged with a criminal violation, or when such inquiry is required by federal law or is essential to the investigation or prosecution of the crime to which the person is a witness or of which the person is a victim. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


01/16/2009Presented and ordered printed 098605248
01/16/2009Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
01/19/2009Assigned Courts sub: Criminal
01/28/2009Reported from Courts of Justice (15-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/30/2009Constitutional reading dispensed (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/02/2009Read second time and engrossed
02/03/2009Read third time and passed Senate (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/13/2009Placed on Calendar
02/13/2009Read first time
02/13/2009Referred to Committee on Militia, Police and Public Safety
02/18/2009Assigned MPPS sub: #2
02/19/2009Subcommittee recommends laying on the table
02/28/2009Left in Militia, Police and Public Safety


CG2 Consulting, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

This is a VACOLAO legislative priority. VACOLAO supports this bill which is identical to a bill that passed the Senate 39-0 last year and failed to pass the House of Delegates by six votes. It would, as a matter of statewide policy, prohibit law enforcement officers from asking a victim or witness of crime about their immigration status unless it was essential to the investigation of a crime or the person had him or herself been arrested for a crime.

Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The Virginia Interfaith Center supports this bill.

Phil writes:

This makes so much sense. We should send a clear message to witnesses and victims who are otherwise afraid to help law enforcement. Even if current fears are unfounded or based on rumors, and current practice is NOT to inquire into immigration status, having this law on the books could make a real difference, making us all safer.

Nonprofit NoVA, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

Support community policing and initiatives to keep communities safe for all residents.