Monday, February 27, 2017

#BlueLivesMatter so let's save some

On, a story caught my eye.  After Another Cop Killed, LA County Lawmakers Demand Investigation Into Laws That Let Criminals on the Street
Some, like the police officer's union and Michael Rushford, the President of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, hold Governor Jerry Brown responsible for signing 2011's AB 109 which went into effect in 2014, for “realigning” hard core criminals from prisons to county jails and probation and parole...

KABC reports that there are two other voter-approved initiatives, Proposition 47, which stopped 'non violent' criminals from going to state prison, and Proposition 57 which will, when it’s fully implemented, accelerate prison sentences.

The suspected killer, Michael Mejia, is a convicted robber, car thief, meth abuser, and hard core gang member. He was arrested five times after being released from state custody, according to the LA Times. 
I understand the frustration.  The fact is, keeping criminals behind bars has done a lot to reduce crime across the US and in California in particular.  However, there's a reason Brown had to sign AB 109.  He was ordered to reduce prison population by a federal judge.  Personally, I think the appropriate thing to do would be to release prisoners into the panel's neighborhood.  I'm fine with razor wire, tents and bologna sandwiches for prisoners.  However, Brown had little choice, and the law's unlikely to change soon.

There is something LA county can do right now to save lives. 

Passerby shoots, kills motorist assaulting deputy after traffic stop

Hero With A Gun Stops Murder Of Arizona Trooper

Those two stories were fairly high-profile, but there are a ton more (linked here).  Sacramento County, California is making it easier to get a CCW permit, and it's no wonder.  CCW holders are even more law-abiding than police officers.  Further, some statistics show that while the effect is not massive, more CCW permits seem to lead to lower crime rates.  To be fair, other sources do disagree, including Gary Kleck, who's been honest about all his research even when it doesn't support his own point of view. 

What we do know is that CCW holders are largely law-abiding and they save police officers.  And while most criminals don't think very far ahead when they commit crimes, they do fear armed citizens more than they fear the police. 

Issuing CCW permits may have a modest effect on crime.  CCW permit holders do save police officers.  Criminals worry about whether their victim may be armed where CCW permits are issued.  So, LA county, give it a shot.  What we know for sure is that issuing CCW permits doesn't hurt anything.  At worst, you'll give a few criminals pause and save the lives of a few police officers, all at very little expense to taxpayers, since CCW holders pay for their own training, firearms and permits.