Legislature approves stricter punishments for repeat child abusers; bills headed to governor

LANSING, Mich. — A pair of bills sponsored by Sen. Peter J. Lucido that would increase penalties for repeat child abusers are on their way to the desk of the governor for signing.

“There should be zero tolerance for criminals who prey upon and abuse children,” said Lucido, R-Shelby Township. “We must hold these people accountable for the pain and mental anguish that they inflict, and this legislation will make sure that repeat offenders receive harsher punishment for their crimes.”

Senate Bills 29 and 30 would strengthen penalties for second-, third-, or fourth-degree child abuse when an individual convicted of the crime has a prior conviction for child abuse in any degree.

Under the legislation, a person convicted of second-degree child abuse with a prior conviction for child abuse in any degree would face a felony charge punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years. Those convicted of third-degree child abuse with a prior conviction would face a felony charge punishable by imprisonment for up to five years. A person convicted of fourth-degree child abuse with a prior conviction would face a felony charge punishable by imprisonment for up to two years.

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