Session: 2023-2024

ACLU-PA Position: Opposes

SB 977 (PN 1224) would amend the Vehicle Code (Title 75) to add a new section, § 3724 (Interference with operation or movement of a public transit vehicle), to create a new criminal offense, with five suboffenses, to punish harm caused to public transportation operators. All of the conduct criminalized under this new section is currently covered under numerous offenses in the Crimes Code (Title 18).

Moreover, the offense created under SB 977, even if duplicative, is not appropriate to include under the Vehicle Code. Title 18 is the appropriate title to amend when adding offenses that are not directly related to vehicle violations, even if the persons being protected are transportation "operators" performing their duties.

Each of these offenses are already criminalized under current law and as such, are duplicative and unnecessary. Creating duplicative offenses is the primary driver of the statehouse-to-prison pipeline. Punishing the same behavior already criminalized under current law corrupts the integrity of Pennsylvania’s criminal law and allows prosecutors to stack multiple charges for the same action, resulting in overly punitive prison terms.

Check the bill's status here.


Senator Frank Farry



Bill number