If a New York Assembly bill passes, police in the state could be fined for covering their badges, to intentionally hide their identities. Assembly Bill A10721 and Senate Bill S3701 would punish officers with a hefty fine. The bill, which is currently in the Assembly Codes Committee, is sponsored by Karines Reyes - Assembly District 87.

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Some police cover their badges or intentionally hide them, especially during protests, to prevent people from identifying them. According to LawFare, police are not obligated to identify themselves,

Broadly speaking, law enforcement officers do not have a legal duty to disclose either their identities or their agencies of affiliation, even if asked directly.

Some cities and towns do require law enforcement to identify themselves. In New York City, The Right to Know Act, which took effect on October 19, 2018, states that an officer with the New York City Police Department must provide their name, rank, command, and shield number at the beginning of certain interactions with citizens. Officers must also have their identifying information available on a business card. However, not all municipalities in New York have this requirement of police.

The Bill Could Make It Illegal To Hide Badges And Make It Punishable By A Fine

Photo by Martin Jernberg on Unsplash
Photo by Martin Jernberg on Unsplash

Assembly Bill A10721 says,

Prohibits members of the state police, police officers, and peace officers from intentionally covering their badges.

Any officer reported for violating the law would be fined $500 for each instance. If passed, the law would create a telephone number that New Yorkers could call to report any officers violating it.

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