FACT CHECK: Does Proposition 47 Allow People To Steal Up To $950 Worth Of Merchandise At Stores In California?
A video shared on Facebook purports Proposition 47 allows people to steal up to $950 worth of merchandise at stores in California.
Proposition 47 changes certain low-level crimes, such as petty theft under $950, from felonies to misdemeanors.
The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently blocked a California law that bans gun marketing aimed at minors, according to Reuters. The court reversed a previous ruling made by a Sacramento federal judge back in January, the outlet reported.
“Wow!! We’re allowed to steal up to $950 at stores in california because of PROP 47,” the Facebook post, viewed two million times, purports. The video appears to show multiple instances of individuals allegedly stealing merchandise from stores such as Bloomingdale’s.
The claim is false, however. According to “MyProp47,” a website dedicated to Proposition 47, the law changes certain low-level crimes, such as petty theft under $950, from felonies to misdemeanors. Other crimes, such as simple drug possession, forgery under $950, shoplifting under $950, and writing a bad check under $950, are also applicable to the law, according to the website.
The law, which is officially named “The Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act,” does not apply to individuals who have prior convictions for specified violent or serious crimes. The aim of Proposition 47 is to ensure prison spending is focused on violent and serious crimes while providing alternatives for non-serious, non-violent crimes, the law’s full text indicates.
In addition, Proposition 47 allows individuals who are serving sentences for felony offenses that qualify as misdemeanors under the law to petition the courts for resentencing. Similarly, individuals who have completed sentences for felony offenses that qualify as misdemeanors under the law can apply for a reclassification. Proposition 47 became effective back in November 2014.
Furthermore, Check Your Fact found no credible news reports that support the claim made in the Facebook video. (RELATED: Does A New Florida Law Require Fathers To Submit A DNA Test Before Signing A Birth Certificate?)
Check Your Fact has contacted multiple legal experts for comment and will update this piece accordingly if one is received.