California Dems anger progressive left, push harsher penalties for shoplifters amid rising crime

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California Democrats appear to be backtracking on some soft-on-crime policies, according to a number of new bills introduced in the state legislature seeking harsher penalties for retail theft.

Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo, a Democrat from LA County and vice chair of the Legislative Progressive Caucus, introduced AB 1990, which would allow law enforcement to conduct arrests without a warrant for shoplifting. Officers would only need to have probable cause.

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The bill, known as the Secured Transactions and Organized Theft Prevention (STOP) Act, would also make any theft of merchandise or property under $950 a misdemeanor, sparking the anger of progressive lawmakers who believe tough-on-crime policies will lead to overcrowded prisons as they did in the 1990s.

“Retail theft continues to impact small and large businesses alike, our California economy and the safety and well-being of our communities,” Carrillo said in a statement. “By enhancing coordination between law enforcement agencies, introducing tougher penalties for these crimes and increasing enforcement against suspected shoplifters, we are sending a clear message: We will not tolerate these acts that threaten our public safety and economic vitality.”

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Carrillo’s fellow progressive caucus member, Tina McKinnor, disagreed on social media, saying AB 1990 would be “bad for black and brown folks.”

www.foxnews.com/politics/california-dems-anger-progressive-push-harsher-penalties-shoplifters-amid-rising-crime

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