SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KABC) — Several new bills aimed at cracking down on crime in California were announced Monday.
The new bills will target suspects involved in crimes across the state, including robberies and violent shootings. Videos of people committing crimes have been posted on social media several times this year, and politicians have said the videos are proof that crime is on the rise.
“There’s no denying that crime is out of control in California,” said James Gallagher, who represents the 3rd Assembly District north of the Sacramento Valley. “We’re seeing an increase in petty theft and retail theft, but also violent assaults.”
At a press conference in Sacramento on Monday, a group of Republicans and law enforcement officials, including several from Southern California, announced the accounts.
One would increase sentences for serial robbers and another would restore a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years for anyone convicted of using a firearm during a violent crime.
“Elected leaders care more about freeing criminals than protecting victims,” said Rep. Bill Essayli. “This is wrong, unethical and frankly immoral.”
Elected leaders pointed to recent mass shootings across the state, also referencing the recent killings of two Riverside County sheriff’s deputies.
“Our Riverside County Sheriff’s Office hadn’t had a fatality in two decades, and then we lost two deputies in two weeks. This is not acceptable,” Essayli said.
Eyewitness News used our ABC7 Neighborhood Safety Tracker to take a closer look at data from the state Department of Justice for the five counties in our viewing area.
Overall, violent crime increased by just 2% between 2017 and 2021. The homicide rate skyrocketed, increasing by about 40% in the same period.
“Crime is out of control in California, and we’re here with representatives from our law enforcement community to send a simple message that everyone, no matter where they live or who they are, deserves to feel safe in their community,” Gallagher said.
The future of this Republican-sponsored legislation is unclear, as Democrats hold supermajorities in both chambers of the state legislature.
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