North Branford Town Council Passes Resolution Urging Action on Criminal Justice by Governor and State Legislature
NORTH BRANFORD – Following an uptick in criminal activity in town, including a recent daylight car theft attempt where a perpetrator fired a shot at a resident, the North Branford Town Council unanimously passed a bipartisan resolution Tuesday evening urging action by the Governor and the Connecticut General Assembly on numerous criminal justice and public safety issues.
The resolution, noting the escalation across the entire state of serious crimes including motor vehicle theft, car-jackings, robbery, and home invasion among others, calls on legislators and the Governor to act on numerous criminal justice measures. They include establishing mandatory minimum sentences for robbery involving an occupied motor vehicle with a firearm or deadly weapon, and increased penalties for committing a crime using a stolen motor vehicle or firearm.
“Much has been done at the state legislative level that has weakened penalties for offenders and created obstacles to law enforcement to do their jobs,” said Mayor Jeff Macmillen. “I hope that our legislative leaders and the Governor will make efforts to strengthen our laws and support our police to combat the increase of criminal activity we have seen.”
“The residents of our town deserve better support for their safety and protection than what they have gotten at the state level,” said Deputy Mayor Thomas Zampano. “I hope that the governor and legislature will take action soon to correct that.”
The resolution also calls for repeal of portions of the police accountability measures. “Aspects of the police accountability measures passed by the legislature removed necessary protections for towns and officers to lawsuits, have badly damaged law enforcement morale statewide, and have made recruiting and retaining police officers very difficult for cities and towns,” said Councilor Nick Palladino who moved the resolution Tuesday evening, and serves as a police officer in East Hartford.
“North Branford is leading the way in pursuing criminal justice reform,” said Councilor Marie Diamond. “I hope other communities will follow our lead.”
North Branford Police Chief Kevin Halloran expressed support for the resolution, as did Councilor Ron Pelliccia who works in law enforcement, but was unable to attend Tuesday’s meeting. The resolution has been sent to Governor Ned Lamont, legislative leaders, and the members of the state House and Senate representing North Branford.
“The resolution passed by the Council on Tuesday includes a request for action on numerous common sense criminal justice items,” said Town Manager Michael Downes. “I hope other communities across the state will let their legislators know what they are facing on the front lines and demand action as well.”
The full Resolution CAN VIEWED HERE.