– Reps. Frank Farry (R-Bucks) and K.C. Tomlinson (R-Bucks) yesterday joined local law enforcement officials to unveil legislation that would impose a new mandatory minimum sentence for previously convicted offenders found to be illegally in possession of a firearm.
Joining Farry and Tomlinson at the press conference at the Bensalem Township Building were Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub; Bensalem Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo; Bill McVey, director of Public Safety Bensalem Township Police Department; and numerous Bucks County law enforcement leaders.
“As violence and crime continues to surge in Philadelphia, dangerous criminals are often crossing into our communities and illegally possessing firearms without regard for punishment. Quite often we hear the comment that the criminal should have never been on the street, but what we don’t often hear is they should have never had a firearm.” Farry said. “Our legislation would enact a mandatory minimum jail sentence for those that continue to defy the law and illegally possess a firearm.”
“We are in a very unique position here in Bensalem,” Tomlinson said. “We border Philadelphia and are centrally located around all the major cities of the Northeast United States. We also have multiple major access points, including the Pennsylvania Turnpike, I-95, Route 1 and Route 13, that filter all types of criminals into our county. Stronger sentencing will better protect our families and businesses.”
House Bill 2819
would impose a new mandatory minimum sentence for those previously convicted of a felony and found illegally in possession of a firearm. A first-time offender would receive a mandatory minimum jail sentence of eleven months. The mandatory minimum jail sentence would increase significantly with each offense thereafter.
“This legislation will send a message across the Commonwealth that felons who possess firearms will not walk away unpunished. Farry said. “And we don’t just need to take that firearm out of the felon’s hands. We need to take the felon off the street.”
“Our legislation creates serious punishment to hold these criminals accountable and hopefully send the message that these kind of violent acts will not be tolerated,” Tomlinson said.
Representative Frank Farry
Representative K.C. Tomlinson
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: David Foster
Reps. Frank Farry and KC Tomlinson unveil their bill to require mandatory minimum sentences for felons illegally possessing firearms.