HB 458 creates a mental health exemption under I.C. 18-915C related to assault of healthcare workers. The bill would prevent Idahoans who are diagnosed with a mental illness, or those seeking treatment for a mental illness, from being charged under this statute, which can result in an enhanced felony penalty over simple battery, which results in a misdemeanor penalty. At a time where many Idahoans with mental illness are increasingly intersecting with the State’s criminal legal system, this bill would acknowledge the role one’s mental illness played in the commission of a crime, and as such, provide an appropriate criminal penalty that will not continue to fill Idaho’s jails and prisons with people needing mental health treatment.


Rep. Lauren Necochea (D)


House Judiciary Committee



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