Senator Bill Larkin (R-C, Cornwall-on-Hudson) announced that Senate bill, S.283, passed the Senate. This bill creates a new class E felony crime for the cemetery desecration of a veteran cemetery plot, grave or burial place.
In recent years, the number of graves, cemetery plots and burial places that have been desecrated has increased dramatically. According to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Department of New York, the looting of final resting places for items to sell has impacted veteran’s graves in particular. Families have always taken great pride in honoring their loved ones with designations marking the cemetery sites as belonging to a veteran. These markings make the grave sites easily identifiable to looters. Senate bill 283 will make it easier to punish those individuals and charge them with a felony for this most heinous of crimes.
"This legislation is long overdue," said Senator Larkin. "We have waited too long to punish those individuals that would stoop to stealing from the dead. I urge the Assembly to pass this bill immediately and send a strong message that we will not tolerate this type of behavior."
The legislation has been sent to the Assembly for their consideration.