A new five-strikes law on misdemeanors, meant to put a stop to career criminals, was passed by the New York State Senate on Monday.
The legislation creates a new crime of aggravated criminal conduct, which would land a felony on anyone who commits a misdemeanor while having committed four or more other misdemeanors in New York State within the previous five years.
“Until tougher laws are in place for criminals who are convicted of repeat misdemeanors, there is no deterrent, they just become experts at gaming the system,” said bill sponsor Senator Carl Marcellino, in a press release. “These criminals may not make the news, but they adversely affect the quality of life for law-abiding citizens. It is time to do something to get them off the streets of New York State and behind bars.”
Aggravated criminal conduct would carry a sentence of up to four years in prison.
The new law would impact a large number of individuals. The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services reported that 8,824 people in New York State have been convicted of five or more misdemeanors within the last three years, according to the press release.
It adds that of the 8,824 people, 1,600 of them were convicted of 10 or more misdemeanors, and 169 committed 20 or more.