Minnesota lawmaker seeks crackdown on fake hate crime claims

Minnesota lawmaker seeks crackdown on fake hate crime claims Photo: KSTP

February 21, 2019 11:41 AM

A Minnesota lawmaker wants tougher penalties for falsely reporting hate crimes in his state after an actor in Chicago was accused of doing so.

Rep. Nick Zerwas' bill comes after actor Jussie Smollett was charged with falsely telling authorities he was attacked by men who hurled racist and anti-gay slurs and looped a rope around his neck.

Advertisement

More from KSTP: 

'Empire' actor charged with making false police report


Zerwas, an Elk River Republican, also cites a false report of a racist note that triggered protests and cancelled classes at St. Olaf College in Northfield in 2017.

Zerwas says false reports traumatize communities and force police to waste resources.

Filing a false police report is usually a misdemeanor in Minnesota. His bill would make falsely reporting hate crimes a gross misdemeanor punishable up to a year in jail and a $3,000 fine.

Connect with KSTP


Join the conversation on our social media platforms. Share your comments on our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages.

Credits

KSTP

Copyright 2019 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

Advertisement

St. Albans congregation remembers man shot, killed after bible study

Simley High School homecoming dance ends early due to 'perceived threat'

NFL rushing leader Cook leads Vikes romp past Raiders 34-14

Man injured in St. Paul shooting Saturday night

1 injured in morning shooting in Minneapolis

North Minneapolis group promotes "Guns Down, Love Up" amid increase in violence

Advertisement