Eastern Ohio Lawmaker Supports New Law To Reduce Violent Crime
Says stiffer penalties will keep violent offenders behind bars
June 16, 2016
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State Rep. Jack Cera (D-Bellaire) today applauded the signing into law of Senate Bill (SB) 97, legislation aimed at protecting communities and reducing gun crimes by targeting repeat violent offenders.

“This legislation is focused on removing the most violent and dangerous criminals from our streets and away from our children and loved ones,” said Cera, who co-sponsored the bill. “By imposing stiffer penalties on violent career criminals, we can help keep our communities safe.” 

Under the new law, offenders with two previous violent felony convictions with a firearm will earn an “armed violent career criminal” designation. Such violent career criminals will be barred from knowingly having, acquiring, carrying or using a “firearm”. A violation will constitute a first class felony and will result in a mandatory two to 11 year sentence.  

The sentencing court will also be required to impose an additional mandatory prison term of two to 11 years if an offender is convicted of a crime that qualifies them as a “violent career criminal” and if the offender had a firearm while committing the offense – a 50 percent increase in mandatory prison time for firearm specifications.

The governor signed SB 97 into law on Tuesday. The new law will go into effect in approximately 90 days.

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