11/21/23 - Governor Signs Bills To Help Protect Victims Of Domestic Violence

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A series of bills have been signed into law that would expand consequences for those charged with misdemeanor domestic violence offenses.

KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Domestic violence survivors will receive more protections from the State of Michigan.

Monday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was in Kalamazoo where she signed Senate Bills 471-472 and House Bills 4945-4946 into law. 

The bipartisan package blocks individuals convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence of having, using or carrying a firearm in Michigan for eight years after finishing their sentence. This is a five-year boost from the state's current law that allows people with domestic violence convictions to have a firearm three years after finishing their sentence.

The Governor says gun violence is now the number one killer of kids and teenagers, surpassing car crashes and cancer.  44,000 people were killed by gun violence in 2022, according to Whitmer.

Specifically, each of the legislation looks to accomplish the following, according to Michigan Legislature:

  • Senate Bill 471: A person convicted of a misdemeanor involving domestic violence shall not possess, use, transport, sell, purchase, carry, ship, receive, or distribute a firearm or ammunition in Michigan until the expiration of eight years after the person has either paid all fines imposed, served all terms of imprisonment or completed all conditions of probation.
  • Senate Bill 472: Updates felonies within the code of criminal procedure to prescribe sentencing guidelines. Specifically, sections 750.224f(6) and 750.224f(7), stating a felony of possession or sale of firearm by prohibited person and a felony of possession or sale of ammunition by a prohibited person.
  • House Bill 4945 - Changes the Michigan code of criminal procedure to change the word "felon" to a "prohibited person" for charges of possession or sale of a firearm and ammunition by a "felon."
  • House Bill 4946 - Prohibits a person convicted or specified misdemeanors involving domestic violence from having, using or carrying a firearm or ammunition for eight years after paying any fines, serving imprisonment and completing conditions of parole.

However, after the eight years pass, these individuals would regain the opportunity to have, use, buy or carry a firearm in Michigan.

 

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