Via email from Karl B.:
The Seattle City Council is considering new legislation that would create a legal loophole that would make substance addiction, mental illness or poverty a valid legal defense for nearly all misdemeanor crimes committed in the city.
The legislation was proposed by Seattle City Councilwoman Lisa Herbold last Wednesday.
The proposal would allow for the dismissal of crimes of poverty and it would do so by revising the definition of duress as a defense against prosecution.
If approved, the ordinance would excuse and dismiss — essentially legalizing — almost all misdemeanor crimes committed in Seattle by offenders who could show either:
- Symptoms of addiction without being required to provide a medical diagnosis;
- Symptoms of a mental disorder; or
- Poverty and the crime was committed to meet an “immediate and basic need.” For example, if a defendant argued they stole merchandise to sell for cash in order to purchase food, clothes or was trying to scrape together enough money for rent. The accused could not be convicted.
It’s like during the Russian revolution. The criminals were considered allies of the revolutionaries because they stole from people with private property.
Who would attempt to have a shop in Seattle with a law like this? Or even have a home in Seattle?
One has to conclude the City Council members who vote for this are deliberately trying to destroy the city and/or are out of touch with reality.