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Tennessee Passes Law in Honor of Chattanooga Businessman Chris Wright: Stringent Measures for Repeat Misdemeanor Offenders

Tough crime prevention measures.

Tennessee Passes Law in Honor of Chattanooga Businessman Chris Wright

Stringent Measures for Repeat Misdemeanor Offenders

In a groundbreaking legislative move, the Tennessee General Assembly approved a bill this week aimed at criminals with multiple misdemeanor offenses. The bill, officially known as House Bill 2323 or the Chris Wright Act, was both proposed and endorsed by prominent Tennessee representatives, namely Rep. Patsy Hazlewood, R-Signal Mountain, and Sen. Bo Watson, R-Hixson. The bill is currently awaiting the signature of Gov. Bill Lee.

Under the Chris Wright Act, a repeat offender charged with a misdemeanor for the sixth time would automatically be classified as a felon. This alteration in designation is not merely symbolic – it also carries practical implications. Most notably, with their new status as felons, these individuals would have their gun rights effectively stripped away.

Acknowledging Transnational Offenses

Moreover, the legislation goes a step further by broadening its scope beyond the state lines of Tennessee; it also takes into account crimes committed in other states. This makes it more comprehensive in its approach, covering a wider range of offending behaviors and potential criminals.

The Tragic Case of Chris Wright

The Chris Wright Act is named in honor of the late Chattanooga businessman, Chris Wright, who was a victim of a heinous crime. His life was tragically cut short on Sept. 28 when he was shot to death outside the Patten Towers, near the intersection of 11th and Market streets. His alleged murderer, Darryl Roberts, has pleaded not guilty to the charges of first-degree murder brought against him.

Court records reveal a long series of criminal offenses for Roberts, with over 60 charges pressed against him since the early 1990s. This included numerous charges from traffic violations to theft and Domestic Assault over the years. Furthermore, Roberts had also been charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of amphetamine in Walker County, Georgia in 2019, demonstrating his interstate criminal history.

Crucial Legislative Efforts and Hopes for Safer Communities

With the enactment of this law, state officials anticipate it will deter potential repeat offenders, making communities across Tennessee safer. It also serves as a legislative tribute to Chris Wright, whose tragic death ultimately shed light on the loop in the state’s legal system that allowed repeat misdemeanor offenders to evade more severe criminal categorization.

HERE News Network anticipates the Governor’s signature, cementing the act into law, and offering solace to Chris Wright’s loved ones, and hope for safer communities across Tennessee.

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