The Senate passed a bill Monday that would allow the Department of Veterans Affairs to unbury military service members in national cemeteries if they committed a capital crime.
Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) introduced the Alicia Dawn Koehl Respect for National Cemeteries Act after Koehl she was shot by a service member. Michael Anderson was buried at Fort Custer National Cemetery, but Coats argued he shouldn’t have been since existing law prohibits anyone convicted of a federal or state capital crime from receiving a military honor burial.
The cemetery claimed they couldn’t disinter Anderson’s remains because he wasn’t officially convicted since he shot himself after committing the crime. Coats’ bill corrects that technicality.
“No veteran who commits a capital crime should be given the right to a military honor burial … to ensure that our fallen veterans can rest in peace … not next to criminals who commit such a heinous crime,” Coats said Monday.
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