HENDERSON, Ky (WEHT) – Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb formally signed a bill into law on Wednesday that aims to protect firefighters and was inspired by an incident that occurred in Evansville in 2021.
Authorities say Evansville firefighter Jonathan Wright was attacked and stabbed while on a medic run in 2021. According to a release from State Representative Tim O’Brien, Wright was unable to shield his name and home address from appearing on public records due to state law. After hearing about the situation, O’Brien said he crafted the legislation to ensure the protection provided to other public safety officers was extended to paid and volunteer firefighters.
“Just as law enforcement and judges already have their addresses shielded from public view, it was clear that those same protections needed to be extended to our firefighters who also serve on the frontlines,” O’Brien said. “I’m incredibly proud to have worked with Jonathan, the Evansville Fire Department and other leaders in the fire service to ensure the law was changed this session to support our firefighters.”
Wright, along with other members of the Evansville Fire Department and other stakeholders joined O’Brien at the statehouse on Wednesday for Governor Holcomb to formally sign House Enrolled Act 1578 into law during a special ceremony. For more information on the bill, click here.