WA Democrats Seek to Eliminate Drive-By Shooting as Factor in 1st Degree Murder

Two Washington lawmakers want to eliminate drive-by shooting as a reason to elevate first-degree murder to an aggravated status.

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- A pair of Democrat legislators in Washington State have pre-filed legislation that claims to promote racial equity “by eliminating drive-by shooting as a basis for elevating murder in the first degree to aggravated murder in the first degree.”

The bill was quietly prefiled on Dec. 23, allegedly to avoid public notice during the Christmas holiday weekend. But sharp-eyed former broadcast journalist Brandi Kruse, who now operates her own online news platform called (un)Divided, pulled this one from under the political covers via Twitter, and it is creating a firestorm.

House Bill 1692 calls itself “AN ACT Relating to promoting racial equity in the criminal legal system by eliminating drive-by shooting as a basis for elevating murder in the first degree to aggravated murder in the first degree; amending RCW 10.95.020 and 10.95.020; creating a new section; providing an effective date; and providing an expiration date.” It is sponsored by Reps. Tarra Simmons (D-23rd District) and David Hackney (D-11th District). They both serve on the House Public Safety Committee and Simmons—whose biography is both harrowing and redeeming—is vice-chair of the House Civil Rights & Judiciary Committee.

The measure deletes drive-by shootings as an aggravating factor in determining a charge of aggravated first-degree murder. The idea seems so outrageous that Kruse’s revelation had garnered 139 responses and was re-tweeted 329 times over the Christmas holiday weekend. One reply, from someone named Phil, ripped the bill’s premise.

“Ridiculous rationale. File it on 12/23 in hopes there would be minimal press coverage,” he wrote.

Most responses to Kruse’s initial tweet ran from the silly to serious, with a majority so far being negative. There was one message that could only come from Seattle. The sender, “gt Whizz” stated, “If all we had was public transportation these drive-by’s (sic) would not happen. Fund Sound Transit and confiscate personal vehicles.”

The five-page legislation would also be retroactive, so if the bill is passed and signed by liberal Democrat Gov. Jay Inslee, it would apply to anyone whose charge was enhanced by the fact that they committed murder from a moving vehicle.

“This act applies retroactively,” the bill says, “to any person convicted of aggravated murder based on conduct committed prior to the effective date of this section where the only aggravating circumstance admitted in the guilty plea or found by a judge or jury at trial was that the discharge of the firearm was either from a motor vehicle or from the immediate area of a motor vehicle that was used to transport the shooter or the firearm, or both, to the scene of the discharge.”

Washington’s Legislature convenes Jan. 10, and this will be a 60-day session because it is an election year. Earlier this month, the Seattle Times acknowledged Democrat lawmakers are again pushing an anti-gun agenda including a ban on so-called “assault weapons” and “Restrictions on high-capacity magazines.” AmmoLand News reported on this back on Dec. 19. However, this new measure carries Democrats to what many feel is a new level of absurdity.

Since her departure from KCPQ in Seattle—the local Fox News affiliate—where she had hosted a weekly news/comment program called “The Divide,” Kruse has garnered more than 54,000 followers for her online presence at Twitter. She has also been a substitute radio host for KIRO-FM’s Dori Monson. Both have a common-sense approach to local and national politics that Western Washington’s woke far-left often despise.

Kruse, in one of her online commentaries at (un)Divided, summed it up best, “If this bill passes, I don’t ever want to hear Democrats in Olympia complain about guns, all the while pushing leniency on those who use them to kill, because if Democrats truly care about gun violence, they sure as hell have a sad way of showing it.”

If Democrat sponsors Simmons and Hackney hoped to sneak this in under the radar, they failed miserably. Evergreen State gun rights activists might justifiably wonder if this is an effort to distract public attention from the gun control measures Democrats want to push over the next couple of months, however. Keeping track of those bills will be the challenge.

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About Dave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms, and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

Dave Workman


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