New York Raises Penalty for Assaulting Crossing Guards

ALBANY (AP) -

Two new laws signed Monday raise the penalty for assa       ulting New York City Housing Authority workers doing their jobs or a school crossing guard anywhere in the state.

The amendments give those public workers similar status under the penal law as police officers, firefighters, paramedics, nurses, emergency room staff, school employees and city sanitation workers.

The laws will raise the misdemeanor assault to a felony in 30 days for the housing authority workers and Nov. 1 for crossing guards.

Sponsors say assaults aren’t unusual against staff at housing projects, and that there are untold, often unreported, incidents where crossing guards are menaced by cars, spit on and hit while trying to protect children.