Text: H.R.923 — 110th Congress (2007-2008)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 110-344 (10/07/2008)

 
[110th Congress Public Law 344]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]


[DOCID: f:publ344.110]

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           EMMETT TILL UNSOLVED CIVIL RIGHTS CRIME ACT OF 2007

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Public Law 110-344
110th Congress

                                 An Act


 
   To provide for the investigation of certain unsolved civil rights 
  crimes, and for other purposes. <<NOTE: Oct. 7, 2008 -  [H.R. 923]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: Emmett Till 
Unsolved Civil Rights Crime Act of 2007.>> 
SECTION 1. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Emmett Till Unsolved Civil Rights 
Crime Act of 2007''.
SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that all authorities with jurisdiction, 
including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other entities within 
the Department of Justice, should--
            (1) expeditiously investigate unsolved civil rights murders, 
        due to the amount of time that has passed since the murders and 
        the age of potential witnesses; and
            (2) provide all the resources necessary to ensure timely and 
        thorough investigations in the cases involved.
SEC. 3. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> DEPUTY CHIEF OF THE CRIMINAL 
                    SECTION OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION.

    (a) In General.-- <<NOTE: Designation.>> The Attorney General shall 
designate a Deputy Chief in the Criminal Section of the Civil Rights 
Division of the Department of Justice.

    (b) Responsibility.--
            (1) In general.--The Deputy Chief shall be responsible for 
        coordinating the investigation and prosecution of violations of 
        criminal civil rights statutes that occurred not later than 
        December 31, 1969, and resulted in a death.
            (2) Coordination.--In investigating a complaint under 
        paragraph (1), the Deputy Chief may coordinate investigative 
        activities with State and local law enforcement officials.

    (c) Study and Report.--
            (1) Study.--The Attorney General shall annually conduct a 
        study of the cases under the jurisdiction of the Deputy Chief or 
        under the jurisdiction of the Supervisory Special Agent and, in 
        conducting the study, shall determine--
                    (A) the number of open investigations within the 
                Department for violations of criminal civil rights 
                statutes that occurred not later than December 31, 1969;
                    (B) the number of new cases opened pursuant to this 
                Act since the previous year's study;
                    (C) the number of unsealed Federal cases charged 
                within the study period, including the case names, the

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                jurisdiction in which the charges were brought, and the 
                date the charges were filed;
                    (D) the number of cases referred by the Department 
                to a State or local law enforcement agency or prosecutor 
                within the study period, the number of such cases that 
                resulted in State charges being filed, the jurisdiction 
                in which such charges were filed, the date the charges 
                were filed, and if a jurisdiction declines to prosecute 
                or participate in an investigation of a case so 
                referred, the fact it did so;
                    (E) the number of cases within the study period that 
                were closed without Federal prosecution, the case names 
                of unsealed Federal cases, the dates the cases were 
                closed, and the relevant federal statutes;
                    (F) the number of attorneys who worked, in whole or 
                in part, on any case described in subsection (b)(1); and
                    (G) the applications submitted for grants under 
                section 5, the award of such grants, and the purposes 
                for which the grant amount were expended.
            (2) Report.--Not later than 6 months after the date of 
        enactment of this Act, and each year thereafter, the Attorney 
        General shall prepare and submit to Congress a report containing 
        the results of the study conducted under paragraph (1).
SEC. 4. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> SUPERVISORY SPECIAL AGENT IN 
                    THE CIVIL RIGHTS UNIT OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF 
                    INVESTIGATION.

    (a) In General.-- <<NOTE: Designation.>> The Attorney General shall 
designate a Supervisory Special Agent in the Civil Rights Unit of the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation of the Department of Justice.

    (b) Responsibility.--
            (1) In general.--The Supervisory Special Agent shall be 
        responsible for investigating violations of criminal civil 
        rights statutes that occurred not later than December 31, 1969, 
        and resulted in a death.
            (2) Coordination.--In investigating a complaint under 
        paragraph (1), the Supervisory Special Agent may coordinate the 
        investigative activities with State and local law enforcement 
        officials.
SEC. 5. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> GRANTS TO STATE AND LOCAL LAW 
                    ENFORCEMENT.

    (a) In General.--The Attorney General may award grants to State or 
local law enforcement agencies for expenses associated with the 
investigation and prosecution by them of criminal offenses, involving 
civil rights, that occurred not later than December 31, 1969, and 
resulted in a death.
    (b) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated $2,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 2017 
to carry out this section.
SEC. 6. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> AUTHORIZATION OF 
                    APPROPRIATIONS.

    (a) In General.--There are authorized to be appropriated, in 
addition to any other amounts otherwise authorized to be appropriated 
for this purpose, to the Attorney General $10,000,000 for each of the 
fiscal years 2008 through 2017 for the purpose of investigating and 
prosecuting violations of criminal civil rights statutes that occurred 
not later than December 31, 1969, and resulted in a death. These funds 
shall be allocated by the Attorney General

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to the Deputy Chief of the Criminal Section of the Civil Rights Division 
and the Supervisory Special Agent of the Civil Rights Unit of the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation in order to advance the purposes set 
forth in this Act.
    (b) Community Relations Service of the Department of Justice.--In 
addition to any amounts authorized to be appropriated under title XI of 
the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000h et seq.), there are 
authorized to be appropriated to the Community Relations Service of the 
Department of Justice $1,500,000 for fiscal year 2008 and each 
subsequent fiscal year, to enable the Service (in carrying out the 
functions described in title X of such Act (42 U.S.C. 2000g et seq.)) to 
provide technical assistance by bringing together law enforcement 
agencies and communities in the investigation of violations of criminal 
civil rights statutes, in cases described in section 4(b).
SEC. 7. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> DEFINITION OF ``CRIMINAL CIVIL 
                    RIGHTS STATUTES''.

    In this Act, the term ``criminal civil rights statutes'' means--
            (1) section 241 of title 18, United States Code (relating to 
        conspiracy against rights);
            (2) section 242 of title 18, United States Code (relating to 
        deprivation of rights under color of law);
            (3) section 245 of title 18, United States Code (relating to 
        federally protected activities);
            (4) sections 1581 and 1584 of title 18, United States Code 
        (relating to involuntary servitude and peonage);
            (5) section 901 of the Fair Housing Act (42 U.S.C. 3631); 
        and
            (6) any other Federal law that--
                    (A) was in effect on or before December 31, 1969; 
                and
                    (B) the Criminal Section of the Civil Rights 
                Division of the Department of Justice enforced, before 
                the date of enactment of this Act.
SEC. 8. <<NOTE: 28 USC 509 note.>> SUNSET.

    Sections 2 through 6 of this Act shall cease to have effect at the 
end of fiscal year 2017.
SEC. 9. AUTHORITY OF INSPECTORS GENERAL.

    Title XXXVII of the Crime Control Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 5779 et 
seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:
``SEC. 3703. <<NOTE: 42 USC 5780a.>> AUTHORITY OF INSPECTORS 
                          GENERAL.

    ``(a) In General.--An Inspector General appointed under section 3 or 
8G of the Inspector General Act of 1978 (5 U.S.C. App.) may authorize 
staff to assist the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children--
            ``(1) by conducting reviews of inactive case files to 
        develop recommendations for further investigations; and
            ``(2) by engaging in similar activities.

    ``(b) Limitations.--
            ``(1) Priority.--An Inspector General may not permit staff 
        to engage in activities described in subsection (a) if such 
        activities will interfere with the duties of the Inspector 
        General under the Inspector General Act of 1978 (5 U.S.C. App.).

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            ``(2) Funding.--No additional funds are authorized to be 
        appropriated to carry out this section.''.

    Approved October 7, 2008.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 923 (S. 535):
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HOUSE REPORTS: No. 110-200 (Comm. on the Judiciary).
SENATE REPORTS: No. 110-88 accompanying S. 535 (Comm. on the Judiciary).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD:
                                                        Vol. 153 (2007):
                                    June 20, considered and passed 
                                        House.
                                                        Vol. 154 (2008):
                                    Sept. 24, considered and passed 
                                        Senate.

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