Near the end of January, a gun fight killed an innocent bystander and wounded six others in Seattle’s vibrant, prosperous downtown. Amazingly, the three shooters, all gang-members under 25, had accumulated a total of more than 80 arrests, and some 40 convictions between them, but spent little time in jail.
The governor blamed “gun violence” not “gang violence” for the bloodshed, but the real problem is the catch-and-release policies for repeat offenders. Career criminals would violate new gun laws just as readily as they violate those already on the books, and the only way to keep guns out of the hands of violent outlaws is to keep the worst thugs locked up – and off our streets.
Seattle remains a safe city – with less than 35 murders last year, compared to 342 in Baltimore, with a population of 150,000 less. But revolving doors for youthful offenders threaten more needless, bloody and horrifying incidents, everywhere across the country.