Legislature(1995 - 1996)

03/17/1995 01:22 PM JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
txt
 HB 47 - UNLAWFUL EVASIONS CLASS A MISDEMEANOR                               
                                                                               
 Number 050                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KAY BROWN introduced HB 47.  Sponsor statement for             
 CSHB 47:                                                                      
                                                                               
 "Current law has two degrees of unlawful evasion--which is the                
 failure to return to detention at a correctional facility or a                
 `half-way' house when so required.  For individuals charged with or           
 convicted of a felony, the offense of unlawful evasion is a class             
 "A" misdemeanor, carrying a sentence of up to one year.  For those            
 charged with or serving time for misdemeanor offenses, the crime              
 becomes unlawful evasion in the second degree and is lowered to a             
 class "B" misdemeanor.                                                        
                                                                               
 "CSHB 47 would eliminate the distinction between first and second             
 degree unlawful evasion, creating a single crime of unlawful                  
 evasion with a possible maximum class "A" misdemeanor penalty.                
                                                                               
 "The success of a community corrections program depends on                    
 responsibility and trust.  An individual serving time for a felony            
 or a serious misdemeanor like drunk driving, earns the privilege of           
 participating in a community corrections program by demonstrating             
 personal responsibility and trustworthiness.  Appropriate sanctions           
 for violating that trust must be in place for the system to have              
 the respect of participants.                                                  
                                                                               
 "A class "B" misdemeanor charge for unlawful evasion in the second            
 degree, is not considered a serious enough offense to warrant                 
 efforts by law enforcement and prosecutors to apprehend and convict           
 offenders.  The penalties are relatively insignificant and carry              
 little or no leverage to deter an inmate from simply failing to               
 return to custody when required.                                              
                                                                               
 "The crime of unlawful evasion is as much a violation of trust by             
 an individual serving time for a serious misdemeanor as for one               
 serving time for a felony.                                                    
                                                                               
 "It is appropriate that there be only the single crime of unlawful            
 evasion carrying the potential maximum class "A" misdemeanor                  
 penalty.  When it comes to a violation of trust, the status of the            
 offender (felon or misdemeanant) should be irrelevant."                       
                                                                               
 Number 090                                                                    
                                                                               
 GERALD BAILEY, Program Director, Gastineau Human Services, urged              
 support for HB 47 and made himself available for questions.                   
 Misdemeanants tend to have less respect for the minor points of the           
 law and feel that the sanctions are not significant, so they are              
 more likely to walk away than someone facing more serious                     
 sanctions.                                                                    
                                                                               
 Number 120                                                                    
                                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE CON BUNDE made a motion to move CSHB 47 (STA) out of           
 committee with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal             
 notes.  Seeing no objection, it was so ordered.                               
                                                                               

Document Name Date/Time Subjects