The ACLU has consistently opposed the imposition of mandatory minimum sentencing terms on the grounds that they are ineffective, costly, eliminate individualized consideration of the offender and the circumstances of the offense, and place too much power in the hands of prosecutors instead of neutral judges. A bill concerning “ghost guns”, or guns which are untraceable or do not appear on metal detectors, heard in both the House and the Senate in the second week of the session, contained such a provision which would have imposed such mandatory minimum sentences for new criminal offenses relating to weapons. We testified in opposition, arguing that the state should refrain from passing legislation that expands the use of mandatory minimum sentencing procedures. Unfortunately, this bill was passed and signed into law.
Mandatory Minimum Sentencing (H 7102, S 2004B)
Representative Patricia Serpa and Senator Cynthia Coyne