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NEWS: Bill Would Call Arson, Arson

February 23, 2016

Bill Would Call Arson, Arson

JUNEAU – Senator Dennis Egan (D-Juneau) put forth legislation on Friday to close a loophole in Alaska’s existing arson laws.

Fire investigators have pointed out that while it is considered a crime of “arson” in the third degree to burn someone’s car on state or city land, the same is not true on private property. The same crime, in that case, would be identified only as “criminal mischief.”

“That makes absolutely no sense,” said Sen. Egan of the inconsistency. “A firebug who torches the boss’s car in the parking lot should be charged with arson. Call it what it is. Using fire as a weapon is dangerous, and ‘criminal mischief’ doesn’t adequately describe the crime. This law will call these crimes what they are.”

SB187 would make a simple change in the language of existing law to include vehicles on private property.

For more information, contact Jeanne Devon, Press Secretary, Alaska Senate Democratic Caucus 907-465-5319.



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