Democrats in New Jersey under Governor Phil Murphy are responsible for soft-on-crime policies at the state level that hinder local police officers from enforcing the law and prevent local prosecutors from keeping criminals behind bars.
Now, a group of Democrats are realizing their party’s criminal justice reform, police defunding and soft-on-crime criminal justice system aren’t working.
Dmocrats Senator Paul Sarlo, Senator Joe Lagana and Senator Vin Gopal have offered a wide-ranging series of bills to combat the surge in auto thefts with tougher penalties, preventive measures, and actions targeted at the car theft networks that have fueled the increase of stolen vehicles and related crimes.
The response is a knee jerk reaction to out-of-control car thefts across the Garden State because the bad guys know nothing will happen to them, especially when they employ minors to commit the crimes.
The Democrats called the sharp increase in auto thefts under their majority control a “Crime Wave”.
“The surge in auto-thefts over the past two years threatens the property and safety of New Jersey residents and places an added strain on law enforcement,” said Senator Gopal (D-Monmouth) “It’s crucial we take action to deter car thieves while also providing additional support to the departments and officials working hard to curb this disturbing trend.”
Senator Sarlo said their work will include measures that will crack down on leaders and members of car theft networks, home burglaries of car keys and key fobs, and updates to bail laws to detain dangerous offenders, including auto theft crimes,” the Democrats said.
“The surge in auto thefts creates a threat to the safety and security of communities throughout New Jersey,” said Senator Sarlo, who also serves as Mayor of Wood-Ridge in Bergen County. “It calls for a comprehensive plan to crack down on offenders, to help prevent thefts and take down the criminal networks of car thieves. We will work together to advance and expand upon the bills already introduced to develop a legislative action plan on vehicle thefts.”
According to state Democrats, who control the governor’s office, the state senate, state legislature and the Attorney General’s Office, thefts are up 22%.
“There were 14,320 vehicles stolen in the state last year, with thefts up 22 percent over 2020. Law enforcement officials expect those numbers to climb even higher this year. The rise of thefts in New Jersey is part of a nationwide trend the National Insurance Crime Bureau has called unprecedented, the Democrats said.