What a brilliant way to name a Prop to get votes! Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act- I am sure the name would make most common citizens to vote Yes on it! Who doesn't want neighborhood and schools to be safe? The bill was proposed to reduce overcrowding of prisons by converting many nonviolent offenses, such as drug and property offenses, from felonies to misdemeanors. This included shoplifting, writing bad checks, and drug possession. The measure made offenses involving less than $950 as misdemeanor. The measure probably helped California state save 100 million plus dollars. So far so good, right? Not really.
1) Have you recently noticed that most cities and neighborhoods in California are having more and more bad incidents? Let me warn you that if you read news about crime statistics and if that made you believe that the crime is going down in your town, think twice! What was a felony earlier, it is only a misdemeanor now! All frauds, shop-liftings, stealing, robberies that are for amount less than $950 are no more a felony! This would not get reflected in crime/arrest statistics now ;)
2) I heard two police/detectives speak in a meeting. They said that due to Prop 47, 'crimes' have actually gone up! There are many incidents of minor stealing, car break-ins, thefts and robbery and they are done by repeat offenders. Most of them know that the police can't do much if the amount is less than $950! They know that it is not going to result in to an arrest or prison now. Many times, there are criminals who would laugh at police. Once police gives them a ticket (that is all they can do for crimes involving less than $950!), they are on to a next crime.
As per the Washington Post: .....police departments and prosecutors refer to as the “unintended effects”: Robberies up 23 percent in San Francisco. Property theft up 11 percent in Los Angeles. Certain categories of crime rising 20 percent in Lake Tahoe, 36 percent in La Mirada, 22 percent in Chico and 68percent in Desert Hot Springs.
Well, I was writing this and stubled upon this post by Washington Post.. Why not read the post yourself?