Massachusetts Governor Proposes Bill to Strengthen Penalties for Illegal Drug Distribution – News

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and Secretary of Public Safety and Security Daniel Bennett have announced a new public safety legislative package that would strengthen penalties for dangerous drug dealers and extend protection for witnesses of crimes. The bill would link state drug classifications to federal drug scheduling, so that state law enforcement can respond quickly to new illegal drugs. The bill would also define the distribution of illegal drugs resulting in death as manslaughter, punishable by at least five years in prison.

“As society keeps seeing evolving public safety threats, like dangerous drugs fueling the opioid epidemic and gang violence in our communities, it is critical that our laws give law enforcement the appropriate tools and enforcement measures to keep everyone safe,” Baker said. “The Commonwealth is focused on curbing the deadly opioid and heroin epidemic, and these reforms will give prosecutors and public safety officers the ability to better respond to new drugs coming into our communities, and to hold accountable drug dealers who put profits over the lives of other people.”

“The federal…

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