Watchdog: Crime in Antioch is down because Prop. 47 changed some felonies to misdemeanors

Watchdog-LogoBy Barbara Zivica

According to the Chief of Police’s recent report to the City Council, the most recent Part 1 violent crime numbers have dropped 11.5% and Part 1 property crime have dropped 12.4%. Combined, total Part 1 crime dropped 12.3% while total arrests are up 19.9%.

Before patting ourselves on the back, let’s look at one of the main reasons for the change in current stats compared to stats from last year. That reason is the passage of Proposition 47 which converts many nonviolent offenses, such as drug and property offenses from felonies to misdemeanors. The measure included exceptions for offenses involving more than $950 and criminals with records involving violence or sex offenses, and allowed for people currently incarcerated for crimes covered by the measure to petition for re-sentencing.

Among the most prominent arguments against the law was that possession of the date-rape drug would be punished as a misdemeanor rather than a felony and the $950 cap would downgrade the theft of most guns to a misdemeanor.

It was estimated that the measure would affect about 40,000 felony convictions per year, which would be reduced from felonies to misdemeanors, representing about one-fifth of annual convictions in California.

Opponents said that if Prop. 47, drafted as a way to help resolve Gov. Jerry Brown’s over crowded jails problem, passed it “would officially end California’s tough on crime era. Between the drug deals I see occurring around town when I go to the store and the shop lifting I see occurring in the stores, employees being unable to interfere if the loss is under $950, it’s obvious that any statistics claiming a drop in property crime statistics is due to Prop. 47, not better policing.

Incidentally, October is Crime Prevention Month.

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4 Comments to “Watchdog: Crime in Antioch is down because Prop. 47 changed some felonies to misdemeanors”

  1. Loretta Sweatt says:

    Sorry to hear this. I voted against Prop 47. It was a fast slick campaign.

  2. Terry Ramus says:

    It is about time that someone gets serious about exposing the real crime impacts from Prop 47 so we can understand the stats. I have asked about this several times and I am still not sure of the correct comparison. Prop 47 promotes crime as an alternative way of life with little more than a slap-on-the-wrist. Prop 47 is responsible for even less serious enforcement of existing crimes, and as is exposed in this story, the property crimes for homes, cars and stores are much more open to repeat crimes. Over and over again with little slaps on the wrist. Thanks to the dumb citizens who voted for more property crimes.

  3. Rich says:

    I recently ran across this information from May, 2015 – so it was only 3 months old. People have to realize this has not been in effect for even a year, but the information below would be be reflective of the first 6 months AND this is for Contra Costa County, not the evntire state. So it is a bit more specific for us. Basically the 2014 population of CoCoCounty was estimated to be 1,111,339 and they have released “over 500”. I imagine it can’t be much over 500 or they would have said 600, etc.

    Hope this information helps Terry Ramos:
    May 6, 2015
    Since last November, when the law was passed and went into effect, over 500 petitions in Contra Costa County have been granted for relief under Proposition 47. That number includes people who were released early from prison or county jail, those who were on felony probation but not in custody and those who had a prior conviction reduced to a misdemeanor.

    Residents in Contra Costa County with questions about Prop 47, can contact Ellen McDonnell, Contra Costa County Deputy Public Defender, at 925-335-8075 or

  4. Rich says:

    I can see why people are confused 🙂

    When Propostion 47 was passed, there were obvious comments regarding the effect it will have on various communities. The reality is the effect, despite being argued otherwise, has been minimal on Contra Costa County. Not to say that potentially other counties weren’t hit as hard or were hit harder than Contra Costa.

    Chief Cantando said this about Porp 47, “So next quarter when I am presenting, I am not going to be surprised at all if our numbers are changing drastically for the worse where a crime is going to be increasing which is very similar to AB 109 where our property crime, which you saw on my slide, those are also supposedly the non-violent, non-serious, non-sexual individuals that are out in our community. But that was only based on their last offense,” said Cantando. “If they had violent offense prior to that and their last offense was a property crime, that is what they were released on. So the system is not perfect. Law enforcement is going to be really struggling to get these individuals into the system if they are doing wrongdoing but the voters voted it and we are going to enforce the law as its written.” Further stating that, “During his remarks to the Antioch City Council Thursday night, Antioch Police Chief Allan Cantando stated he wished Proposition 47 would have failed.”

    Contra Costa Times said, Prop. 47: Bay Area counties begin releasing inmates

    Greg Munks and Steve Wagstaffe: Prop 47 will result in increased crime, less safety in neighborhoods
    A new era in California criminal justice dawned this week, as hundreds of inmates walked out of county jails and more than 4,000 held in state prison readied for possible release with reduced sentences for theft or drug crimes, following voter approval of Proposition 47.

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