JOLIET, Ill. –State Rep. Larry Walsh, Jr., D-Elwood, is cosponsoring legislation to help fight carjacking by curbing the possession of stolen vehicles.
“I am sponsoring this legislation to help seek justice for victims of these crimes,” Walsh said. “Carjacking is a serious crime and growing issue, and we need to make sure that those who commit this crime face penalties and do not escape the law due to a loophole.”
House Bill 4729 changes the requirements to be charged for possession of a stolen vehicle. Currently, there must be proof that the person did know the vehicle was stolen, which allows perpetrators to lie and say they were borrowing the car from a friend, which leaves victims unable to fight against them in court. HB 4729 will allow criminals to be charged with possession of a stolen vehicle if they came into the possession of the vehicle by recklessly ignoring it was stolen.
“Having a vehicle stolen is not just theft, it impacts middle-class families who rely on vehicles as a means to get to work or school, when even one day lost can make a major impact,” said Walsh. “It’s my hope that this legislation can help crack down on those who commit these crimes.”