Charlie Baker on Crime



Passed one of the most comprehensive police reform laws

The horrific murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis brought the issue of systemic racism to the forefront of our national dialogue. We acted and passed one of the most comprehensive police reform laws in the country. The new law bans chokeholds, limits no-knock warrants, and creates a new independent state entity with the power to establish policing standards, certify law enforcement officers, investigate allegations of misconduct, and suspend or revoke certification.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to Massachusetts legislature , Jan 26, 2021

Account for criminal history in dangerousness hearing

We've made progress on criminal justice. But our work here is not done. In deciding whether or not it makes sense to hold a dangerousness hearing, current law requires a judge to ignore any previous criminal history and to focus only on the crime before the court. Moreover, the list of crimes for which a prosecutor is allowed to make that request is quite narrow. Too often, dangerous career criminals are arrested only to be released as soon as they appear in court. This sort of revolving door serves to undermine people's faith in law enforcement and the courts. And it's a threat to public safety.

Nobody wants to see someone's life ruined over a small-time lapse in judgment. But, we still need a common sense approach that provides the system with the ability to schedule a dangerousness hearing when individuals with violent histories come before the court. We owe it to law enforcement and to our citizens to ensure that we're doing all we can to keep dangerous people off of our streets.

Source: 2019 Massachusetts governor inaugural (State of the State) , Jan 3, 2019

2010: charge state prisoners $5 a day for their room & board

In a big shift from 2010, Baker is mostly soft pedaling some traditional MA GOP attack lines (at least for now), such as "Getting tough on criminals":