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Seattle considers ‘poverty defense’ for misdemeanor crimes

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The Seattle City Council is considering a law that would excuse misdemeanor crimes if the offense can be linked to poverty, mental health, and addiction, KUOW-TV reported.

The proposal would allow judges and juries the option to dismiss misdemeanor crimes that were committed because of poverty or while a person was experiencing symptoms of a mental illness or substance abuse disorder.

The proposed legislation would exclude misdemeanors related to domestic violence and impaired driving.

If passed, it would make Seattle the first city in the nation to excuse misdemeanor offenses linked to poverty, addiction and mental illness.

“In a situation where you took that sandwich because you were hungry and you were trying to meet your basic need of satisfying your hunger, we as a community will know that we should not punish that. That conduct is excused,” Anita Khandelwal, King County director of public defense, told KUOW-TV.

Former Seattle City Council member Tim Burgess opposes the proposal and called it a “defense lawyer’s dream,” KOUW reported.

“It sends this powerful signal that as a city government, we don’t really care about this type of criminal behavior in our city,” Burgess said.

The Seattle Police Department said they will continue to hold those accountable who commit crimes and that the proposed legislation “seems intent on eliminating any accountability or deterrent to engaging in these behaviors and would endanger the safety and rights of all people of Seattle.”

In a statement to Seattle Times, the police department said “officers will continue to focus on holding individuals accountable who commit one of the thousands of assaults or thefts that occur in our community each year.”

This proposed legislation comes as crime rates in Seattle rise. Protests have been ongoing in the city, including the Capitol Hill Occupied Zone protests, which was an occupation protest and self-declared autonomous zone in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle that lasted 150 days.

Cities and states across the nation are reevaluating police policies as protests and demonstrators demand for change.

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Uvalde, TX Mayor Calls Beto O’Rourke a ‘Sick Son of a B****’ After he Heckled Gov. Abbott’s Presser

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The vile act of politicizing horrific tragedies such as the Uvalde, Texas elementary school massacre, has been in full force. Democrat Beto O’Rourke “was escorted out of Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s press conference Wednesday after he showed up and heckled the governor in the middle of an update on the elementary school massacre in Uvalde” reports The Blaze.

Beto is a former congressman from El Paso, Texas as well as a Democratic presidential nominee briefly for the 2020  elections. During his time, he campaigned hard on his support for a mandatory gun buyback scheme.

The Blaze reported on Beto’s behavior at Abbott’s press conference:

As Abbott was finishing his remarks to reporters, O’Rourke, the Democratic candidate for governor, stood up and began speaking about the need for gun control legislation.

“Excuse me,” Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said as O’Rourke ignored him and went on about how “the time has come to put a stop” to gun violence. O’Rourke did not have a microphone, and most of his comments were inaudible.

“Sit down!” shouted Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) as the Democrat kept speaking.

“You’re out of line and an embarrassment!” Patrick told O’Rourke, while others began raising their voices.

“You are doing nothing!” O’Rourke yelled at Abbott as police officers began to march him out of the room.

“You need to get his a** out of here, this isn’t the place to talk this over,” said Uvalde Mayor Don Mclaughlin, calling O’Rourke a “sick son of a b****.”

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