Charleston Mayor Joe Riley says it’s outrageous that Governor Mark Sanford vetoed what’s called the Recidivism Reduction Act. Riley says the bill was designed to give law enforcement more tools to fight repeat offenders and career criminals.
“This is a reasonable and much needed measure that law enforcement in South Carolina has worked hard for. Every police department in our state would benefit from this. Every neighborhood would benefit from this. It simply means that if you are convicted and if you are sentenced to jail and are on probation or parole, that during that period of time you have the ability by law enforcement and reasonable circumstances to make sure you do not have guns and drugs on you,” says Riley.
Riley says he does not understand the reasons behind the governor’s veto.
“That for the life of me why the governor would think that convicted criminals who are on probation, who should be in jail but have been let out early, shouldn’t be subjected to our police departments being able to make sure they are not carrying guns or drugs, I do not understand,” says Riley.
The mayor says the “common-sense” legislation, which passed both houses of the General Assembly with large majorities, is one that communities in the state deserve. Riley says the governor has invoked his personal views on personal liberty.
The governor stated in his veto that the measure “goes too far in giving law enforcement a blanket grant of authority to conduct searches and seizures over a segment of our population regardless of whether there is a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity.”
(Riley’s comments, MP3 1:23)