California state lawmakers rejected a proposal to reduce charges for simple possession of heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine from a felony to a misdemeanor. According to LATimesBlogs.com, Sen. Mark Leno of San Francisco, said this bill will save money and result in more people getting successful substance abuse treatment, therefore helping them to better "re-enter society."
Leno said, "No data begins to suggest that putting felonies in these mostly young people and incarcerating them for longer periods of time in any way benefits their recovery from drug use." Sen. Ted Gaines of Roseville fears this bill would threaten public safety, and he also agrees that drug use leads to other problems, such as property crime. He said, "I don't understand how decriminalization will actually reduce crime in California."
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- Item Tag: California drug penalties