Emmett Till Anti Lynching Law is the newest addition to the US federal civil rights code. The act signed into law on March 29th, 2022 by president Joe Biden classifies lynching as a federal hate crime and prescribes punishments for people found guilty of lynching.
In this article, we take a look at the full text of the Emmett Till Anti Lynching Law, the charges offenders face and the punishment guidelines. Read on to know more.
Emmett Till Law 2022
The law is named after the 14-year old Emmett Till who was lynched to death in 1955 by two white males in Mississippi. The perpetrators were later discharged by an all-white male jury.
The Emmett Till law 2022 is contained in Chapter 13 of title 18 of the United States Code, the chapter which deals with Civil rights in the US. The lynching law shall be cited as an addition to section 249 of title 18 of chapter 13.
The Emmett Till law 2022 states that:
“LYNCHING: Whoever conspires to commit any offense under paragraph (1), (2), or (3) shall, if death or serious bodily injury (as defined in section 2246 of this title) results from the offense, be imprisoned for not more than 30 years, fined in accordance with this title, or both.
OTHER CONSPIRACIES.—Whoever conspires to commit any offense under paragraph (1), (2), or (3) shall, if death or serious bodily injury (as defined in section 2246 of this title) results from the offense, or if the offense includes kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, be imprisoned for not more than 30 years, fined in accordance with this title, or both.’’.
Paragraph (1), (2), and (3) of the United States Codes are as follows:
Punishment for lynching in US
The initial punishment prescribed by a 2020 version of the anti-lynching act was a maximum of 10 years in prison, but an amendment to the bill means, the new law will see offenders face 30 years in prison and fines for anyone found guilty of conspiring to commit an act of lynching that causes death or injury.
Why Anti-lynching law matters
Lynching has been a crime perpetrated against African Americans and other minorities in the United States and effectively used as a tool to terrorize the racial minority community in furtherance of supremacists and racial ideologies.
For nearly 200 times and over a century, congress failed to pass an anti-lynching law from the first introduction of a bill by North Carolina congressman, Rep. George Henry White, the only African American in congress in 1900.
Recent incidents involving the 2020 murder of Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia by two white males counted as hate crime as determined by a federal jury, a case in which charges for lynching would have applied had the Emmett Till Anti lynching law been in force when the heinous crime was committed.
The Emmett Till Anti Lynching Law 2022 is in force and will see offenders face prison time of up to 30 years and fines crimes motivated by racial or religious hatred that leads to death or injury of others.
REFERENCE: CaseText U.S Code
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