by State Representative Ben McGorty (R 122nd District)
Recently, I polled residents of the 122nd District and asked you how you felt the state should respond to a recent increase in car thefts and vandalism in our communities.
Overall, the vast majority of you supported greater legal consequences for juveniles who commit adult crimes like auto theft, especially those who have repeatedly broken the law.
Local law enforcement has been clear that this is not just another short-term result of the pandemic, but due to long-term juvenile justice reforms that have made it more difficult for police and judges to prevent repeat offenses and protect victims.
As an Assistant Republican Leader in the House, I've been a vocal supporter of proposals put forward by our caucus to fight recent spikes in crime by seeing that our laws are properly enforced.
But some members of the legislature have been more quick to blame car owners for leaving their cars unlocked. They’ve also blamed victims for leaving their key fobs stowed away within range of their car, where thieves can boost the signal to remotely unlock and start the vehicle.
Note: Rep. McGorty did not indicate how many residents responded to his poll. Rep. McGorty’s question he polled with, as well as his poll is attached. Question: What do you think is the best policy for dealing with car thefts by repeat juvenile offenders?
How to Speak on this Topic
Judiciary Committee public hearing
Wednesday, March 31, @ 10 a.m.
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