California Loosens penalties for gun thieves, date rapists

Gun thieves and date rapists are rejoicing in the Golden State following the passage of Proposition 47, a ballot initiative that reduces penalties for those so-called “non serious” offenses.

To give one an idea, the text from the state-approved voter guide describes one of the “cons” of Prop. 47 thusly:

Potentially releases 10,000 felons from state prison. Reduces penalties for stealing guns. Reduces penalties for possession of “date rape” drugs. Opposed by prosecutors, law enforcement, and the business community. Opposed by crime victims and sexual abuse victims. Vote NO on Prop. 47.

Naturally, as one might imagine, law enforcement isn’t too thrilled. For example, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department issued the following critiques of Prop. 47 on its Facebook page:

  1. In most instances, many crimes that were previously “arrestable” as a felony will now only be “citable” as a misdemeanor. That means they may not be booked into jail but rather given a citation (similar to a traffic ticket) with a court date to appear, and released in the field. They will not be held pending trial. Such felony crimes that are now misdemeanors include:
  •  Commercial burglary (theft under $950)
  •  Forgery and bad checks (under $950 value)
  •  Theft of most firearms
  •  Theft of a vehicle (under $950 value)
  •  Possession of stolen property (under $950 value)
  •  Possession of heroin, cocaine, illegal prescriptions, concentrated cannabis, and methamphetamine

Undoubtedly, America has a problem with mass incarceration. We have five percent of the world’s population with 25 percent of the world’s prison population, according to the ACLU.  We are the world’s largest jailer. So, yes, we need to address this problem. But we must address it intelligently. Giving gun thieves and suspected date rapists a slap on the wrist doesn’t seem to fix the problem, in fact, it will probably end up making things worse.

“It’s going to increase crime,” Mike Rushford, of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation told local news affiliate KCRA. “There are going to be more guns on the street under this law, because it’s easier to steal the gun and the penalties are lower.”

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Eric November 14, 2014, 12:34 pm

    Oh, my God, is this a joke?! I can’t even believe this is happening.

    • Russ November 16, 2014, 4:19 pm

      Believe it Eric.
      Join the NRA as a lifetime member and sign up a friend.
      Take a friend shooting and give away memberships for Christmas.
      Get more involved so you know what’s happening.
      The NRA is out there fighting for your 2A rights, and always will be.

  • Russ November 11, 2014, 8:15 pm

    That’s my $#!thole of a state folks!
    Brought to you by Democrats who cheated the vote.
    Hell, it was probably inmates that took that vote over the top, along with dead people, and their pet goldfish.
    I’ve watched California go down my whole life ( I’m 55 ) It’s ruined, and over run with illegals, bums, drug dealers hippys and the dumbest people with the smartest phones.
    I’m done with it. I gotta get out of here before I go insane and they take my guns away because of that.

  • HollowStateRocks November 10, 2014, 4:55 pm

    Wow!!Makes me glad I left the golden state after getting out of the army! It’s bad enough they’re passing laws to make it harder for law abiding citizens to own guns and rifles but now they want to make it easier for the crooks!!! Don’t get me wrong, I love CA but not the A-holes running it into the ground.

  • Dan November 10, 2014, 12:12 pm

    Of course it will make people’s homes targets! Why don’t they throw out all their Anti Gun laws that only affect Law Abiding Citizens…
    It seems to me, that they are intentionally making it easier for criminals, not just California but other States and the Federal Government. To commit crimes and get away with it. But chasten the Law Abiding for wanting to have guns to protect themselves and families from these criminals. We need a “Good” change.

    This is my “personal” opinion.

  • BHP Fan November 10, 2014, 11:01 am

    Liberals suck. If this isn’t evidence enough, I don’t know what is.

  • wolfpack-bravo November 10, 2014, 9:11 am

    Let’s see, in a state that has a pack of politicians who want to outlaw firearm ownership they pass a law to make the theft of firearms a misdemeanor. Hmm, no agenda there!! Get more firearms into the hands of criminals easier, let them commit more violent crimes, take away the peoples right for their own good. Nope, nothing to see here folks, move along.
    How about making the death penalty mean something for murderers and other death penalty worthy crimes? One appeal in one year then penalty enforced. No more television and recreation time. You clean up, learn a trade and learn to become a productive member of society. You get three nutritional meals a day and water to drink. Don’t like it? Don’t do the crime!!
    Enough said, soap box relinquished.

  • Scott Loddesol November 10, 2014, 4:58 am

    Having had a pistol “borrowed” from my collection by one of my sons acquaintances. I live in Yuba City Ca. Just north of the capital, My ( he knew better) oldest was having a party one night and my other son was cleaning his hand gun in his room,my 1857 Nagant. Was out for cleaning also and he had explained its unique design to one of his friends,Long story short he didn’t put it back in the safe and some ahole walked with it. Called the police right away called the atf , and also let all the local gun shops know what had happened . We found the kids name his address,he had priors Called the local police apparently that wasn’t enough information for them chastised my “responsible” son for leaving guns out when he didn’t have eyes on them, Then proceeded to call the cops with each new puzzle piece has it was obtained. This was 3 years ago luckily he took the pistol without ammo and the last few times I got ammo for it it cost more than the gun and was impossible to obtain locally. Sinc I know the idiot’s whereabouts I’ve often thought about showing up just to remind him he took the only weapon in my possession He can’t ammo for unlike me that has plenty for my other pistols, but with my luck I’d get arrested for assault. And this was before prop 47 passed. I have a number a c&r guns chastised both kids threatened to take the safe keys away from I thought the responsible one. The owner of one of the local shops was a retired county sheriff and he couldn’t believe the lack of response,I guess I was supposed to perform a citizens arrest and do the work for the city

    • DanF. November 10, 2014, 8:24 am

      Oh, and your local police would appreciate it if you obtained a full confession after appropriate Miranda warnings. But it doesn’t matter if the Nagant is worth $950 or less, because now that’s a misdemeanor with a one year statute of limitations.
      Your best bet is to sue the miscreant in small claims court. Maybe you can, at least, get the value of the gun. What a wonderful way to run a criminal justice system.

  • Mark N. November 8, 2014, 1:01 am

    To put this new initiative into proper perspective, there are a couple of things that you have to understand about the current situation in C California. First, the State is under a federal court decree to reduce the prison population by 35,000 prisoners due to overcrowding and inadequate health care. The method for achieving compliance has two facets: transfer of high profile offenders to private out of state prisons and release of nonviolent offenders to serve their time in county jails. The second facet is not working too well–the county jails were overcrowded already due to lack of room and or lack of staff due to budget cuts imposed by California’s dire economy. Which means that most of these offenders are released on supervised parole anyway, and new nonviolent offenders or parole violators are released the same day or the following day on a promise to appear. And it is also true that most of these offenders are drug addicts, busted for possession or drugs and or paraphernalia. Other than getting sober and learning new skills, they do not really benefit from their time in the can. Most of their thievery is targets of opportunity, but not armed robbery, home invasions, or muggings. So yes, property crime will rise, but violent crime not so much. So what this initiative recognizes the status quo. Also remember that California, for all of its vaunted flakiness, is in league with Texas and Florida when it comes to punishing crime.

    • Howard November 10, 2014, 12:59 pm

      Your comment is right on. I can assure you that in our poor, underfunded, rural county before this court ordered change, we were barely keeping up with our indigenous criminal element. Now the state is kicking down hardened criminals to us with chronic diseases like TB, Hep-C, HIV, diabetes and CHF, and we are responsible for their medical care while incarcerating them for as much as 6-8 years. The overload on our jail medical system alone is breaking the budget of the county. I think that we MUST stop incarcerating people for minor or “victim-less” crimes. Also we must differentiate between criminals and the insane that simply can’t contain their behavior in an acceptable manner. I promise that putting a schizophrenic in jail for a year for throwing rocks at an imaginary alien will NOT improve their mental health nor will it produce a safer society.

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