DeSantis Proposes Execution Eligibility for Child Rapists, Stiffer Drug Crime Penalties, and More

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Florida’s Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), proposed a series of criminal justice reforms Thursday. These included making child rapists convicted eligible for execution, and reducing the number of jurors required in order to recommend the death penalty.

DeSantis stated Thursday that he wanted to cement Florida’s reputation as a law-and-order state and to take any necessary actions to further protect Floridians.

Florida’s crime rate has fallen to a 50-year low right now. He said that overall crime was down almost 10% year-over-year, with murder down 14% and burglary down 15%, and robbery down 7 %.

DeSantis summarised the proposals in a Twitter tweet Thursday afternoon.

The proposed anti-crime legislation includes a provision that “ensures that the minimum sentence for child rapists in all cases is life imprisonment without the possibility for parole, and advances reforms to reinstate capital punishment.”

Proposals related to drugs include the imposition of additional penalties for drugs that resemble candy and the allocation of $20 million to local law enforcement efforts like fentanyl-specific strikes teams.

DeSantis also suggested reducing the number of required jurors to recommend the death penalty. Instead of requiring unanimity, a jury could recommend the death penalty with a supermajority.

Nikolas Cruz was the Parkland school shooter. The jury didn’t reach a unanimous verdict, and Cruz was not sentenced to death. DeSantis stated that he believes justice wasn’t served in this case and that only one juror should have the right to veto any recommendation for capital punishment.

DeSantis’ proposal includes several measures to keep dangerous criminals from communities. One proposal would restrict who is eligible to be released before an individual appears before a judge. Another proposal would require a hearing before a trial for dangerous offenses.

Ashley Moody, Florida Attorney General, spoke as well as several law enforcement officers.

Moody stated that safe communities do not happen by chance. Moody said that drastic action was needed due to “the lethal potency [of Fentanyl] and the sheer quantity that is in this country and in this State.”

Moody stated that “common sense doesn’t seem to be very common anymore” in many areas of the nation, but will reign supreme in Florida. Moody was referring to soft-on crime policies in cities like Los Angeles, Portland, and New York City. Moody claims that these policies can pose a serious threat to law-abiding citizens.