Democrats in the state legislature are considering whether to let die a controversial bill that prohibits police from arresting criminal suspects for certain crimes in order to reduce jail population.
We’re going to go on record as stating, let it die, put it out of our misery.
As the Denver Post describes it, the pandemic kept a lot of people out of jail, and Democrats want to keep it that way.
The Jail Population Management Tools measure, SB21-62, would forbid police except in limited circumstances from arresting suspects for certain felonies, taking them to jail and requiring bond to make sure they show up for trial.
Supporters say they are willing to drop Class 4 crimes from their bill, which includes manslaughter, assault, internet luring of a child, enticement of a child, sexual assault, arson.
Because not arresting those suspects? That was never going to happen.
But they still don’t want Colorado cops arresting anyone for:
Examples of Class 5 felonies include inciting a riot, not paying child support, vehicular assault through reckless driving, stealing property valued between $5,000 and $20,000, charity fraud, stalking and election forgery.
Examples of Class 6 felonies include theft of property valued between $2,000 and $5,000, unlicensed practice of a wide variety of professions, bigamy, illegal computer hacking, falsely reporting a bomb threat and impersonating a cop.
This might make sense for some very low level crimes like not paying child support, bigamy or computer hacking.
But others crimes like inciting a riot are problematic. If someone is inciting a violent act like a riot, are cops supposed to just write them a ticket and allow them to continue rioting?
Is that what Coloradans can expect from future Peaceful Protests™ that turn violent? Cops just handing out tickets for anarchists to use as tinder for their fires?
There’s plenty to hate in this bill, which is why Democrats are talking about putting it aside until the opposition is no longer paying attention and they can rebrand it.
Reducing jail population is a noble idea, but it should not come at the risk of public safety.