Those convicted of stealing guns in New Jersey would be more likely to face prison time under bipartisan legislation that was introduced Thursday.
Under New Jersey law, third-and fourth-degree crimes, which includes the theft of items under $75,000, carry a “presumption of non-imprisonment” for first-time offenders. The bill (A2916) would strip away that presumption for someone convicted of stealing a firearm.
“When you take that out, there’s a presumption that there would be incarceration,” said state Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer), a sponsor.
Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick (R-Union), another sponsor, said stolen guns are often used in violent crimes.
“This act is more serious than stealing property. This bill sends a message to criminals that they will face severe consequences for stealing a firearm,” Bramnick said. “This is a necessary step to help curb the incidence of violent crime.”
“I think this is a gun right-left alliance on gun control,” Gusciora said. “We want guns off the streets and they want guns off the streets.”
Is that true? Is that something both sides can agree upon - even the hyper-contentious gun-control fanatics who comment around here?
How about the problem of gun owners who do not secure their guns and thereby make gun theft easier? Even New Jersey, known for its strict gun control has some weak-ass type of safe storage law. It should go much further.