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This amendment to RI Law 9-26-5, Exception of Police and Firefighters' Pensions--Assignments Invalid, is proposed to exclude CONVICTED murderers from receiving their disability pension while serving their prison sentence. Obviously this is one unintended consequence of the original law. The amendment would also allow a Civil Court of Law to consider the disability pension of a CONVICTED murderer when adjudicating justice for the victim's family. It is a law that applies ONLY to police and firefighters' pensions. Another unintended consequence of the law is that it causes the murderer to "double dip" into the State coffers. The taxpayers are fully supporting him while he is serving his 20 years, plus life, sentence and the taxpayers are totally enriching him while he also collects his tax-free disability pension. We don't even allow our retired school teachers to do that. Certainly that is something that we should not allow murderers to do.
My son, LT James Pagano, was an active and respected 17-year veteran firefighter on the Cranston Fire Department when he was murdered by his neighbor. The murderer was a former Providence Police Officer who many years ago served 6 months active duty on the force, hurt his knee and "decided" to go on disability for the rest of his life. Jim was murdered three years prior to the 20 years necessary to receive a full pension; therefore, his family receives nearly half of what the murderer and his family receive while he is serving his sentence.
At the time of his murder, my son and his family (pictured here) were celebrating the ninth birthday of his son, my grandson. He also had a 12-year old daughter and a lovely wife. They deserve at least as much income as the murderer and his family receive.
I ask for your support of this amendment in the interest of fairness and justice for the families of murder victims in Rhode Island (In this case, my son's family), and for the taxpayers of Rhode Island. I believe we all need to fight for what is right, moral and just from our representatives. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support
Dear Speaker Matiello:
Thank you for meeting with us concerning the amendment to RI Law 9-26-5, Exception of police and firefighters' pensions--Assignment Invalid (attached). We are also delivering a printout of a petition we started to support our position which received 26,300 lignatures..
We look forward to your advice and support.
Very truly yours,
Anthony & Rosealba Pagano (and family)
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