Ky. Bill named in honor of slain Bardstown officer

BARDSTOWN, KY (FOX19) - A House Bill named in honor of a slain Bardstown Police Officer strives to keep individuals convicted of murdering law enforcement officers behind bars for life.

The Officer Jason Ellis Memorial Act, otherwise known as House Bill 368, would set the minimum penalty for anyone convicted in the murder of a law enforcement officer to life without parole.

Representative David Floyd (R-Bardstown) announced the bill on Tuesday.

Jason Ellis, 33, was killed in the line of duty on May 15, 2013

According to authorities, a woman reported a fatal car accident on a Bluegrass Parkway exit ramp involving a police officer on May 15. Upon arrival, a trooper discovered Ellis' body and determined he had been shot, instead of the original report of a crash.

Police say Ellis did not have any radio communications with dispatch in the minutes before his death. He worked second shift and was in uniform in a marked police car on his way home from work when the incident occurred.

"The murder of Officer Ellis highlights the danger the men and women of law enforcement across the Commonwealth face on a daily basis, whether it's in a large city or a community like Bardstown," said Rep. Floyd. "My bill places the lives of our police officers to the highest possible level, and will hold anyone who is convicted of intentionally murdering an officer to at least the rest of their lives behind bars."

Floyd proposes a new paragraph to the Kentucky Revised Statutes. Under the definition of murder, the proposal states that anyone found guilty of intentionally killing an on-duty local or state police officer, sheriff, or deputy sheriff would face life in prison without any possibility of parole.

The bill will be considered during the 2014 Regular Session of the Kentucky General Assembly.

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