Governor Paterson Signs Assemblyman Mike Spano Bill Into Law
ALBANY, NY -- Assemblyman Mike Spano (D, C, I-Yonkers) announced that Governor David A. Paterson signed legislation he authored into law which amends the Penal Law to include plastic knuckles as a deadly weapon.
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The issue of plastic knuckles was brought to Assemblyman Spano’s attention after a video surfaced on the internet which showed just how devastating plastic knuckles can be. The video shows the destruction that this weapon produces and how easy it is to get them through security checkpoints. Plastic knuckles, just like brass knuckles, slide over one’s fingers to create a harder striking surface on the fist.
“Plastic knuckles are an undetectable, deadly weapon which people are using, because they are not metal and can easily get through security checkpoints,” Assemblyman Spano said. “These plastic knuckles are being sold for as little as $5 on the internet and anyone can purchase them. This was a common sense piece of legislation which will protect the residents of this state.”
This legislation amends the Penal Law to treat plastic knuckles like metal or brass knuckles. This measure passed the Assembly at the end of session and was sponsored in the New York State Senate by Senator Andrew Lanza. Currently, it is illegal to possess brass knuckles, and with Governor Paterson signing this important legislation into law, it is now a crime to possess plastic knuckles in New York State.
Simply possessing one of these deadly weapons would now be a misdemeanor with the possibility of spending up to one year in jail upon conviction. Displaying, or possessing and threatening to use plastic knuckles while stalking someone will now be punishable as a class E felony with the possibility of spending of up to 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison.
“This law proactively addresses the innovations of potential criminals. Plastic knuckles are the modern incarnation of brass knuckles and pose a threat to our safety because they are undetectable. In a post 9-11 world we must have the necessary tools to prosecute those attempting to bring weapons, metal or plastic, into our airports, governmental buildings or schools,” stated Senator Lanza
“After seeing the video on the internet that show the severity of plastic knuckles I knew that something had to be done before someone was seriously injured or killed,” Assemblyman Spano added. “Since they are plastic, these weapons will go unnoticed by metal detectors in places such as schools, government buildings, and airports. This new law will give law enforcement officials the ability to charge anyone found in possession of these dangerous weapons.”