Oklahoma senator wants to make attacks on officers a hate crime

Oklahoma state Sen. Casey Murdock cited the recent ambush of two deputies in Los Angeles, California, as he prepares to introduce legislation that would make attacks on law enforcement a hate crime.

A state senator in Oklahoma says he plans to file legislation that would classify any attacks on law enforcement officers as a hate crime.

Sen. Casey Murdock cited the recent ambush of two deputies in Los Angeles in his announcement.

“After the events this weekend in California – and the terrible attack on our police officers in Tulsa earlier this summer – it’s more important than ever to protect our law enforcement officers and the individuals putting their lives on the line to protect our safety,” Murdock said in a statement.

Related: 2 Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies shot in apparent ambush

Murdock said he wants to classify officers, first responders, national guardsmen or members of the military as a "protected class."

“With the hatred and unrest in this country, we must classify these careers as a protected class. Attacks against our peace officers are absolutely a hate crime because they are targeted based on their profession.”

Under Oklahoma's current state statute, hate crime charges can be filed against acts of violence or threats directed against a person based on race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin or disability.