HARTFORD— State Rep. Ben McGorty (R-122) joined his House Republican colleagues to unveil a set of legislative proposals aimed at addressing growing concerns for public safety in Connecticut’s cities and towns. In a press conference, state Republicans outlined the comprehensive approach to making Connecticut safer which features four main pillars of public safety.
“Residents’ concerns that I hear frequently are in equal parts that our state has a growing crime problem, but also that state legislators are not doing enough to address it,” Rep. McGorty, member of the Public Safety Committee said. “While the majority is keen on policy decisions that hamstring our law enforcement ranks, depleted officer morale, and made our communities less safe, I am committed to our wholistic approach to public safety. We are focused on reducing crime by enhancing services for at-risk youth, supporting law enforcement, increasing protections for victims of domestic violence, and making necessary reforms to the bail bond system.”
The pandemic worsened an already growing issue in our state – teenaged juvenile offenders, especially committing vehicle thefts. Unfortunately, there are often innocent bystanders who are directly impacted by these actions. Our current laws coddle these offenders and disregard victims, while also encouraging “clean slates” for criminal records.
- Expand the circumstances by which a juvenile offender is automatically transferred to the regular criminal docket, including commission of a serious juvenile offense
- Reestablish the Family with Service Needs Program (FSNP) to provide diversion services for children who are beyond control, runaways, or truant from school
Bail Bonds Reforms
Connecticut’s bail system has been under assault from the courts and legislative Democrats. It’s no surprise that it has cracked under the pressure and let bad actors game the system.
- Streamline the licensing system for bail bondsmen as well as imposing fiduciary standards on clients’ funds similar to the system used by attorneys
- Hold bad actors in the bail bonds market accountable to support allies
Supporting Law Enforcement
Decisions from the majority in the legislature in recent years have severely damaged morale among the ranks of our state troopers and local police departments, leading them engage in less proactive enforcement.
- Allow officers to re-engage with proactive policing, such as requesting a driver’s consent to search their motor vehicle in order to get guns and drugs off the street, pursuing offenders in cases of stolen vehicles or property, litigating governmental immunity in a way that is fair to both sides.
No Tolerance for Domestic Violence
Incidents of domestic violence crowd the headlines in Connecticut in which victims are grossly abused by members of their family or loved ones.
- Increase the penalty on murders committed during an act of domestic violence to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
- Enhance protections for the surviving victims, including an expansion of GPS monitoring of the most dangerous domestic violence offenders.
Representative Ben McGorty is a member of the legislatures Public Safety Committee and represents the 122nd Assembly District, consisting of parts of Shelton, Stratford, and Trumbull.