New bill would make it illegal in Florida to approach police officer after receiving warning

Crime scene tape. (Generic) (Pexels)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A new bill filed in the Florida Legislature would make it illegal to approach a police officer or firefighter at a scene after being warned to stay away.

Senate Bill 1126 says it is unlawful for any person “to violate such warning and approach or remain within 30 feet of first responder... with the intent to interrupt, disrupt, hinder, impede, or interfere with the first responder’s ability to perform such duty.”

The bill would also make it illegal to “directly or indirectly harass the first responder or make so much noise” that a first responder couldn’t perform their job.

Violating a warning from a first responder by not staying back at least 30 feet or being too noisy and interrupting their work, would result in a first-degree misdemeanor.

The bill is sponsored by St. Sen. Bryan Avila, R-District 39.

If Senate Bill 1126 becomes law, it would take effect Oct. 1, 2023.

About the Author:

Steve Owen is the Assistant News Director at WPLG, and helps lead the daily news operations.