A Democratic-sponsored bill in the Legislature is drawing sharp criticism from Republicans.

House Bill 2001 (HB 2001) would allow convicted felons to petition state courts to have their sentences reduced when meeting certain criteria.

Twelfth District Rep. Jacquelin Maycumber (R-Republic) says she's outraged by what she calls a "growing theme" of legislative protections for hardened criminals.

"The growing issue here is that in the last few years we've heard nothing about victim compensation and it's all about the criminal. And we're talking about heinous criminals like rapists, murderers, and pedophiles. And there's this growing theme about not dealing with the issues that the victims suffer."

7th Dist. Rep. Jacquelin Maycumber (R-Republic)
7th Dist. Rep. Jacquelin Maycumber (R-Republic)

Maycumber adds that the needs of crime victims in the state should come before those of the offenders who perpetrate crimes.

"It's just shocking to see this constant victimization of the criminal and not the individual that suffered because of their crimes."

The bill would require a convicted adult felon to have already served ten years in prison before being able to petition for clemency, and for juvenile offenders to have served at least seven years.

It also mandates that the felon have the consent of the prosecuting attorney to approach the court for sentence modification.

HB 2011 was introduced by 23rd District Rep. Tarra Simmons (D-Bremerton) and has nine co-sponsors, all Democrats who argue the measure would help reduce overcrowding in state prisons and provide a better chance for inmates to reform.

On Tuesday, the bill passed out of the House on a party-line vote of 51-46 and is now in the Senate where it had its first reading on Wednesday prior to being referred to the Law & Justice Committee.

NewsRadio 560 KPQ logo
Get our free mobile app

What Is A Day Like In Texas Prisons? A View From Both Sides Of The Bars

Have you ever wondered what life inside a Texas prison is really like? I asked friends who are correction officers and folks who have volunteered at jails. I also asked former inmates, and browsed forums and articles with current and former inmates. Put all together, it paints what I hope is a fairly accurate picture of daily prison life in Texas.

Gallery Credit: Renee Raven

More From NewsRadio 560 KPQ