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DA Murders Spur Action in Congress

(CN) - A Texas senator introduced congressional legislation to increase protection of judges and prosecutors, after the recent murders of two prosecutors near Dallas.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, introduced The Line of Duty Act of 2013 last week.

It would allow local governments to use federal funding to pay for security details for judges and prosecutors who are in danger of retaliation or intimidation.

"This legislation would provide prosecutors, judges, and law enforcement officials more flexibility in how they choose to protect themselves and their families, as well as create stronger offenses for those who target our public officials," Cornyn said in a statement.

It also would allow federal, state and local judges, prosecutors and law enforcement officials to carry guns in federal facilities, federal courts and jurisdictions where they are otherwise illegal. They would be allowed to buy and keep ammunition magazines of any size. The Bureau of Prisons would be required to provide secure firearms storage areas.

The bill would also create a new federal crime for killing, attempted killing or conspiracy to kill a federal judge, federal law enforcement officer or federally funded public safety officer, including state prosecutors and judges.

The bill was filed after Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, were murdered in their home on March 30. They were shot to death with an assault-type weapon.

The McLellands were killed 2 months after masked gunmen murdered assistant Kaufman County Assistant District Attorney Mark Hasse in a parking lot near the county courthouse.

Hasse had been investigating the Aryan Brotherhood. Two hours after he was killed, two members of the white racist gang pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy charges, in a case Hasse helped investigate.

After Hasse was murdered, his boss, McLelland, told the killers through the media that he would "find you, pull you out of whatever hole you're in, bring you back and let the people of Kaufman County prosecute you to the full extent of the law."

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