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Op-Ed: Idaho Chiefs of Police Association Responds to Proposed Minimum Mandatory Sentencing Legislation

By • January 21, 2024

As drug overdose deaths continue to wreak havoc on families across the country and right here in the great state of Idaho, we need your assistance in urging our legislature to stand for the most vulnerable in our communities. Approximately, 106,000 people nationwide lost their life due to a drug overdose in 2022. The data for 2023 is not in yet, but you can be assured it did not decline. According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, at least 270 people died from an opioid related death, 49% of which involved fentanyl. These numbers are most definitely underreported, and we know the actual number is much higher.

It is time for Idaho to take a stance on fentanyl by placing it in our Mandatory Minimum Sentencing laws for drug traffickers. The Idaho Chiefs of Police Association know all too well the devastation drug addiction creates in our society and our families. We will continue to support prevention and rehabilitation for those addicted to drugs. However, those responsible for trafficking poison into our communities need to be held accountable for their actions; especially when we know 6 in 10 pills have been proven to contain a lethal dose of fentanyl.

Idahoans who were surveyed overwhelmingly support Mandatory Minimum sentences for fentanyl traffickers. On behalf of our statewide membership, the Idaho Chiefs of Police Association Board of Directors is asking you to urge your representative to act on behalf of their constituents when it comes to this very important issue.

Chief Tracy Basterrechea – President
Chief Rex Ingram – Vice President
Chief Roger Schei – Past President
Chief Tomi Mclean – Region 1 Vice President
Chief Joe Huff – Region 2 Vice President
Chief Steve England – Region 3 Vice President
Chief Josh Rhodes – Region 4 Vice President

This Op-Ed was submitted by the Idaho Chiefs of Police Association, Tracy Basterrechea – President. Op-Eds do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of those at the Idaho Dispatch.

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11 thoughts on “Op-Ed: Idaho Chiefs of Police Association Responds to Proposed Minimum Mandatory Sentencing Legislation

  1. Idaho does NOT need, “Mandatory Sentencing”.
    Idaho needs Conservative Judges that get the job done.
    Note: One size does not fit all.

  2. Each case should be judged on its own facts. A one-size fits all sentencing is simply wrong-headed.. There will always be cases that do not fit the criteria and judges, who want to be fair and dispense justice, need to be able to increase the jail time or decrease it based on the severity of the crime. Say NO to one size fits ALL. It is the ONLY FAIR way. Allow a judge to make the determination.

  3. I support mandatory minimums for drug traffickers. Unfortunately, many of our judges have shown themselves to be permissive of trafficking regardless the effects on the populace. Fentanyl deaths are a serious problem not only here in Idaho but across this nation. We can all agree that much of this is due to the Biden regime’s refusal to enforce any border policies and the real solution to the problem is to stop electing people who support open borders or sanctuary policies for illegal aliens. And perhaps that ought to apply to our judges as well.

  4. I wish I had the time to dissect this entire article, there is so much here that needs to be expressed. For what it is worth, I may, if I can. I guess it is no secret for those that are here that this country is in trouble, but what becomes more clear is that people either still don’t know why or say they care and don’t. I don’t post this out of disrespect, just what I see. Although some get it (Thank you), some clearly don’t. I did write a series on the drug issue called the Marijuana Menagerie and I may need to repost it in an effort to try to get people to see the consequences and unintended consequences of a thing and to open up this topic, like I try to with all others, to see the bigger picture, from the governments classic desire to create a problem, to instill fear in the people and finally, as it always does trying to become the hero coming in with a solution, that never is. What I don’t think people understand is that everytime the government advocates for something, it, by default, expands government power so if one supports the expansion of this power, one also supports the loss of liberty, expanding the power of government without a care for what this incrementalization will do to future generations. We say we hate traffic but we all create it by being careless, likewise, we all hate drugs but have allowed the government the power to do everything to create the crisis, instilling fear in the people and as it always does, get people divided on whether one does of doesn’t not realizing things are not that simple. People can take sides for different reasons, just because one doesn’t support a biill doesn’t mean they love drugs and hate cops, anyoone that makes statements like this are manipulating you by using Mob-rule tactics (since they most likely believe we are a democracy?) The bigger picture on this issues? World govenrment. Drugs is a byproduct of a much bigger issue and no one wants to talk about it? No one asking why the borders are open or assuming they are to change the election demographic, that’s it? How narrow minded. The reason why the borders are not closed is because the government doesn’t want them closed. One reason is elections, another is multiculturalism, the continual division of people, Exercising Cloward and Piven to collapse our country, but moreso, to merge countries into a “soviet bloc-style” nation like the EU. We have seen this before but most ignorant Americans don’t realize it and think it will never happen here when it already is. Trade agreements are all a part of that puzzle, and so are agreements like The New Declaration for North America and The Declaration of Interdependence as well as the wording in trade agreements and achieving the “global consensus” outlined in The United Nations Agenda 21/2030. While the global agenda is advancing, here at home inciting fear about drugs, law enforcement focuses only on drugs (The oblitteration of the 4th amendment and others violations) and even the people don’t even call out the feds for burdening the states with drug issues while law enforcement commits to take more federal money to further increase its power and authority? It’s not about drugs! It’s about world government! FDR said, “if it happens in politics, you can bet it was planned that way.” If you support more government, I would simply like to ask you where does your authority come from and it is a proper use of that authority? Typically, people don’t think of such questions which is not only problematic but what we find typically is that the ignorant and apathetic are the ones that enslave us all even at the cost of seeing those like us as your adversary, while you praise abusive government authority. I am less worried about what the govenrment is doing than I am concerned with those that don’t know better that to allow it to happen.

    1. you nailed it. There’s a larger issue. we were in the Ontario Oregon wallmart & passed 3 sketchy fighting age males who said in spanish “when can we start to kill gringoes?” A bill was just passed federally to allow illegals to purchase firearms. goes into effect sept 2024. connect the dots. We’re already invaded, this looks like imanent war!

    2. Tom, you are right, and I agree with the Chief Basterrechea on this one. Failing nations and societies are destroyed systemically.

  5. After 30 years in corrections/counseling and Parole, I agree with the sheriff: It is time for Idaho to take a stance on fentanyl by placing it in our Mandatory Minimum Sentencing laws for drug traffickers.

  6. This bill seems like another example of government ‘doing SOMETHING!’ so that We the People can see it while making sure to ignore/hide (and do nothing about…) the actual causes of the problem-the border/illegal aliens.

    The drugs come from South of the border.
    They come across via cartel-controlled illegal aliens.
    The illegal alien mules are distributed across the country by the current administration.

    We’ve seen how mandatory minimum sentences play out, and they invariably result in minor players being massively overcharged. Part of a judge’s job is to look at the particulars of each case and judge accordingly. Why is this government so intent on usurping judicial power?

    The judicial system is supposed to err on the side of the people in order to protect the liberty of all. This bill seems to invert that concept.

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