LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A new Arkansas law signed Thursday is hoping to give officers and the public an extra layer of protection.

Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed the Disarming an Officer bill into law Thursday. The law will create a separate felony charge when an offender either attempts to or disarms an officer with the intent to cause harm to the officer or the public.

Under previous Arkansas law, the offender would only be charged with resisting arrest which is a misdemeanor.

Those who attended the signing like retired North Little Rock Police Department officer Lt. Jim Scott said the new law is a game changer.

“I think this is going to send a very strong message to those offenders who would try to harm our police officers statewide,” Scott said. “It’s a big win for law enforcement and public servants today.”

Scott said it was a career dream of his to help get the law passed when he learned other states had similar laws.