TN Paper Backs Tougher Penalties For Worst Offenders


While Tennessee cops and prosecutors argue to keep violent criminals in jail, pro-gun legislators are doing all they can to proliferate guns in restaurants that serve alcohol and public parks – in the name of protection, says The Tennessean. In an editorial, the newspaper says the legislature should pay closer attention to people on the front lines than to people from the gun lobby. The prosecution and enforcement team, called the Tennessee Public Safety Coalition, has made strong cases for some common-sense laws meant to crack down on the worst of the state’s offenders, says the Tennessean. The newspaper says the coalition should also support rehabilitation efforts being tried across the state, like the drug-court concept and proposals for halfway houses to help freed offenders adjust.

The group wants each home burglary committed in a 24-hour period to count as separate cases. Prosecutors say burglars are aware that hitting several homes in one 24-hour period is considered only one case. That should change, says the Tennessean. Efforts to keep the worst of the worst in jail are easy to support, but jail time comes with costs, and the safety coalition is well aware of the financial limits facing the legislature. Law enforcement officers make the case that tougher sentencing can save money in the long run.

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