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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I am in Olympia working hard on your behalf to bring public safety and the rights of violent crime victims to the forefront of important public policy discussions that will impact all of us in Spokane. I know from personal contact with many of you that the safety of your families and communities is extremely important. Legislation passed by the majority party over the past few years has made us all feel less safe as violent crime, property crimes, and auto thefts continually increase.

My bills
This year, I am sponsoring several public safety bills that have garnered a lot of attention and discussion.

House Bill 1160 creates an aggravated circumstance for criminals who mutilate or dismember their victims. I was shocked to learn that burning or mutilating a corpse was only a misdemeanor. There have been cases where career violent criminals go that extra step of burning or mutilation to hide their crimes. This bill will give prosecutors more tools when sentencing. It passed the House policy committee and awaits further action.

House Bill 1161 eliminates the ability for violent criminals who use a firearm in their crimes to be eligible for earned early release credits. It makes no sense to me when many of the same legislators who want to attack law-abiding gun owners are the same ones who advocate for early release of violent criminals who use firearms in their crimes. This bill has not yet had a public hearing. To comment on this bill, click here.

Rep. Graham in the House Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee – Jan.17, 2023

House Bill 1162 would expand the offenses and penalties for the manufacture, sale, and distribution of certain controlled substances. Overdose deaths in Washington state have risen 66 percent from 2019 to 2021. We are in a crisis. We need to take seriously the damage done to our communities by those who sell, manufacture, or distribute hard drugs like fentanyl and heroin. This bill has not yet had a public hearing, but you can click here to leave your comments.

House Bill 1805 would make certain violent robberies count as a 'strike' under Washington state's Three Strikes You're Out law. We know that a robbery can be violent and criminals can terrorize and commit acts of violence without leaving “grave bodily injury,” which is the current standard for a robbery to be considered a 'strike.' We need to crack down on violent robberies and hold criminals accountable.

This bill also addresses a recent case involving 14-year-old Chelsea Harrison of Vancouver who was murdered in 2005. Her killer beat an initial life sentence before being released and eventually suffocating Chelsea. The man was sentenced to life in prison without parole but Democrats in the state Legislature passed a bill in 2019 that removed second-degree robbery from the list of 'strikes.' In 2021, Democrat legislators made the change retroactive, which has led to the need for resentencing for Russell, who recently received a 26-year sentence instead of life in prison. With time served, he could be out of prison in nine years.

My bill would prevent this from happening again. Life in prison without parole should mean exactly that! To leave your comments on this bill, you can click here.

House Bill 1601 is my “Parental Bill of Rights” which lists a specific set of rights that parents should have as they relate to the care, well-being, education, and upbringing of their children. You can read my news release on this bill here. You can leave comments for this bill here.

You can listen to my interview with KTTH's Jason Rantz on my public safety bills here.

I'm also working on ways to bring affordability back into our lives. Everything is so expensive and inflation has hit family budgets hard. We are trying to ensure the state does not add to that financial burden and to see if it is possible to use the state's budget surplus for property tax relief. I'm also working on health care issues as a member of the House Health Care and Wellness Committee.

I want to thank the many of you who have contacted my office with your thoughts and opinions on legislation and issues. And for your support! You're involvement is crucial in my work as your state representative! Thank you for the honor of serving you in Olympia.

Sincerely,


Jenny Graham

State Representative Jenny Graham, 6th Legislative District
RepresentativeJennyGraham.com
435 John L. O'Brien Building | P.O. Box 40600 | Olympia, WA 98504-0600
jenny.graham@leg.wa.gov
(360) 786-7962 | Toll-free: (800) 562-6000