– In response to rapid increases in violent crime, Pennsylvania House Speaker Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) has appointed Rep. John Lawrence (R-Chester) to chair the newly established House Select Committee on Restoring Law and Order. Additional appointees to the committee include Reps. Amen Brown (D-Philadelphia), and Danilo Burgos (D-Philadelphia), Torren Ecker (R-Adams/Cumberland), and Wendi Thomas (R-Bucks.)
The Select Committee on Restoring Law and Order is the result of House Resolution 216
, which recently passed the House with bipartisan support. The committee has a broad mandate to look at all aspects of law enforcement in Philadelphia, including prosecution, sentencing, the rights of crime victims, and the city’s use of funding intended for law enforcement. The resolution also directs the committee to review “the performance of public officials empowered to enforce the law in the City of Philadelphia, including the district attorney, and [make] recommendations for removal from office or other appropriate discipline, including impeachment.”
“A bipartisan majority of the House has charged the select committee with a serious responsibility,’ said Lawrence. “As chairman, I do not enter this work with any predetermined outcome in mind. The committee will review the facts and follow them wherever they lead.”
The committee’s review comes in response to increasing public concern about rising rates of crime in Philadelphia, which set a record number of homicides in 2021. Current trends suggest 2022 could set another murder record.
The city has seen a significant increase in other crimes as well, including carjackings. Earlier this year, a member of Congress was carjacked at gunpoint in broad daylight in south Philadelphia.
The committee will work through the summer and present recommendations to the full House in the fall, along with a report of the committee’s findings.
Representative John Lawrence
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Donna Pinkham