Editorial Board: Legislation targets wrong criminals


A Kansas legislator has proposed a bill that would remove the option of bail for any Kansan who commits three or more felonies, basically forcing them to serve the full allotted term.

Sen. Derek Schmidt, R-Independence, said the bill is supposed to target property offenders who habitually burglarize and vandalize houses and other property.

We question the motives behind this legislation. Jails have little room for inmates, which could be used for more violent criminals.

Who would you rather have enter jail without bail, a first-time rapist or a person who has stolen a few televisions and some jewelry on three separate occasions?

Once these three-time property offenders are thrown into jail, they would be lumped in with rapists, murderers and other violent offenders because of the lack of space. What’s going to happen when they meet these violent individuals? Will they really learn from their past mistakes and turn into upstanding citizens?

Legislators need to differentiate between the seriousness of property crimes and violent crimes.