OLYMPIA – When it comes to public safety, Rep. Goodman (D-Kirkland) has been recognized for his work from organizations such as the Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention, King County Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Children’s Alliance. Rep. Goodman is continuing his successful work this session with legislation targeting property offenders, domestic abusers and those who take advantage of our vulnerable adults.
During last summer’s wildfires, residents were evacuated from their neighborhoods and returned to find their homes burglarized. Criminals used the state of emergency as an opportunity to steal from defenseless victims away from their homes. In response, Rep. Goodman has introduced HB 2492, giving courts the authority to increase prison time for offenders convicted under these conditions.
“Imagine coming home after evacuating due to fire, or flood, or some other natural disaster. You’re thankful that your home wasn’t destroyed, only to find your home ransacked and your valuables stolen. That’s kicking someone while they’re down and the court should have the power to increase the punishment for those criminals,” said Goodman.
Rep. Goodman’s major domestic violence bill, HB 1632, is also moving through the legislative process this year. This comprehensive bill increases accountability for repeat domestic violence offenders and those who assault children in the home. “Repeat domestic violence perpetrators are some of the most dangerous people in our communities, committing many other violent crimes,” said Goodman. “Let’s make sure repeat offenders are appropriately punished – and supervised – to prevent them from victimizing others again.”
Our aging population is at greater risk of abuse, both from physical neglect by caregivers and particularly from theft through fraud and undue influence. Working closely with AARP and Kirkland’s Senior Council, Rep. Goodman is moving a significant elder abuse bill, HB 1499, through the legislative process this year. The bill increases penalties for criminal mistreatment and theft from vulnerable adults and makes it easier to bring charges and secure criminal convictions.
“Stealing, or even worse, purposefully denying basic needs to someone in your care deserves a special class of punishment. When someone’s life is in your hands, it’s criminally negligent to withhold the basic necessities of life,” said Goodman on HB 1499.