GOP lawmaker proposes harsher punishment for opioid dealers; bil - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

GOP lawmaker proposes harsher punishment for opioid dealers; bill dies in House

House Bill 2241 targets dealers trafficking in heroin and fentanyl - a deadly synthetic opioid more potent than morphine. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) House Bill 2241 targets dealers trafficking in heroin and fentanyl - a deadly synthetic opioid more potent than morphine. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
If convicted of possessing fentanyl, the bill calls for an average prison sentence of 10 years for the first offense and 15 years if caught again. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) If convicted of possessing fentanyl, the bill calls for an average prison sentence of 10 years for the first offense and 15 years if caught again. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

A bill at the state Legislature that would have punished drug dealers almost as harshly as convicted killers didn't make it out of the House of Representatives.

House Bill 2241 targets dealers trafficking in heroin and fentanyl - a deadly synthetic opioid more potent than morphine.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Opioid crisis in Arizona]

Rep. Eddie Farnsworth, R-Gilbert, sponsored the measure and hoped the harsher punishment would discourage drug dealers.

If convicted of possessing fentanyl, the bill called for an average prison sentence of 10 years for the first offense and 15 years if caught again.

For some perspective, the average sentence for manslaughter is 10 and a half years in prison and 16 years for second-degree murder.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Arizona politics]

The measure made it out of committee but was voted down on the House floor, 32-27.

Both Republicans and Democrats voted against it and were worried the proposal wouldn't solve the root problem.

"That's just outrageous. We don't need to be putting more people in, especially when we're not clearly defining what's the difference between possessing fentanyl and what is the possession for sell [sic] and that's one of the things that we haven't seen defined yet," said Rep. Daniel Hernandez, D-Tucson.

The bill applies to other opioids, including heroin.

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


Powered by Frankly