NASHVILLE — Youths under age 16 could be transferred to adult courts if charged with acts of terrorism under a bill passed this afternoon by the state House.
The bill is aimed at anyone seeking to intimidate, coerce or influence governments through murder, assassination, torture or mass destruction.
Members approved the bill, sponsored by Rep. Gary Hicks, R-Rogersville, 78-5. It was previously approved by the Senate.
Representatives also approved another Hicks bill that authorizes elected district attorneys general, full-time assistant district attorneys general, full-time pro-tem prosecutors employed by the District Attorneys General Conference, the executive director and deputy director of the DAs' Conference to carry firearms in the same manner as a law enforcement officer if they have completed POST-certified training.
An amendment sends the bill back to the Senate.
The General Assembly is trying to wrap up its annual legislative session later today or this evening.
Several sponsors aren't even bothering to explain what their amended bills do, prompting House Calendar and Rules Committee Chairman Bill Dunn, R-Knoxville, to complain on one measure that "I know we're trying to get done but can we get an explanation?"