MADISON – State Representative Jessie Rodriguez (R-Oak Creek) joined her legislative Republican colleagues in supporting a variety of bills aimed at fighting crime in Wisconsin. The legislation addresses many goals of the legislature, including promoting consumer protection, making our roads safer and keeping our communities safe.
Legislation relating to consumer protection prohibits anyone from knowingly transmitting misleading or inaccurate caller ID information. It also prevents solicitors from blocking their caller ID information. Unsolicited calls are the most common consumer complaint filed with the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP), and this legislation aims to prevent those calls from being displayed in a misleading way on caller ID.
“I think a common frustration in all of our lives is receiving unsolicited and potentially harmful calls,” said Rep. Rodriguez. “This legislation will align our statutes with federal law and help make sure the information that appears on our caller IDs is truthful and accurate.”
The legislature also took up several bills relating to the operation of a motor vehicle while intoxicated. Although operating while intoxicated (OWI) arrests are down according to the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ), it is estimated that nearly 2,000 arrests are still made each month. Of those arrests, a third of the OWI incidences are reportedly committed by repeat-offenders, with some people offending five or more times.
“OWIs are a serious issue in our state. The bills I supported yesterday will ensure there are serious consequences for repeatedly driving under the influence. By reforming our laws surrounding prosecution of repeat OWI offenders we can deter drivers from driving under the influence and keep our roads as safe as possible.”
The Assembly also considered many bills aimed at fighting violent crime in Wisconsin. FBI data from 2008-2017 has displayed that violent crime in most Wisconsin cities has been on the rise, and the federal government has even identified Milwaukee as a city in need of assistance in fighting crime. One bill in particular aims to ensure that guns are not in the wrong hands by imposing accountability on prosecutors who dismiss a felon-in-possession of a firearm charge. The bill would require prosecutors to seek court approval before dropping such charges if the suspect has prior convictions for violent felonies. The court would have to produce a written report explaining why granting the request to drop the charges was appropriate.
“It is already illegal for felons to possess firearms, yet there are reported cases of felons arrested for illegal possession of a firearm who see no prison time for that offense,” said Rep. Rodriguez. “Assembly Bill 808 provides for accountability of prosecutors handling felon-in-possession charges.”