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Mendelson: Crime bill doesn't target D.C. protesters

Wednesday - 2/15/2012, 5:38am  ET

WASHINGTON - D.C. Councilmember Phil Mendelson says a crime bill introduced last month is not directly targeted at groups of protesters like Occupy DC.

Mendelson tells The Washington Times that the bill partly focuses on who should prosecute crimes committed in the nation's capital, where there are many areas of federal land ( http://bit.ly/Ak3Cjc).

The bill expands a section on impediments along sidewalks to include "a park or reservation" and notes that an "enclosure" can include areas inside and outside of public buildings, such as the U.S. Capitol. It also says people cannot remain in, or return to, a demonstration area after they have been told by law enforcement to leave.

Mendelson says changes two years ago to the city's disorderly conduct code unintentionally sent more cases to federal prosecutors.

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Information from: The Washington Times, http://www.washtimes.com


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)