Thursday, February 05, 2015

Legislation filed to reduce jail pops, shut down red light cameras, and other stories

Here are a few items which likely won't make it into independent posts this week but merit Grits readers' attention:
  • State Rep. Senfronia Thompson filed a good bill, HB 1115, that would double down on legislation by former Rep. Jerry Madden to allow police to issue citations instead of making arrests for pot possession, driving with an invalid license, and several other Class B misdemeanors. Thompson's bill would mandate citation instead of arrest for those offenses unless there are other reasons (e.g., outstanding warrants, they're from out of town) to detain a suspect.
  • The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported on a renewed legislative push to shut down red light cameras.
  • State Sen. Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa had an op ed in the SA Express News calling for Texas to raise the age at which defendants are tried as adults from 17 to 18. In the Corpus Christi Caller Times, House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee Chairman Abel Herrero also backed the "raise the age" proposal, citing his committee's interim report, discussed here.
  • The San Angelo Standard Times published an item on legislation to promote use of police body cams through grants and the proliferation of standards.
  • This morning I noticed several referrals from The Washington Post and discovered they linked to a Grits post in a staff editorial today about solitary confinement.
  • I agree with much of what Forrest Wilder wrote here about Texas having barely begun its journey down the path of de-incarceration, and have written as much in the past. But I disagreed in the comments with his assessment of Rick Perry's record.

1 comment:

Jason Truitt said...

Tap the brakes a little on HB1115. As I read it, it's still permissive for "local law enforcement," but mandatory with exceptions for school cops. But the school cop exception is only for a ticky-tack reason (not being authorized by a supervisor or local law enforcement).