Legislators could toughen penalty for burglaries

Two bills pending in the Legislature would increase the penalty for burglary of an occupied dwelling in cases such as Martin’s.

Under current state law, anyone convicted of breaking into an occupied or unoccupied home, whether armed or not, can receive a minimum of three years in prison.

Legislation authored by state Rep. Credell Calhoun and Sen. David Blount, both Jackson lawmakers, would increase the minimum penalty to 10 years.

“Under current law there is no distinction between the two, … but it is only right that there be a stronger penalty,” said Sen. David Blount, D-Jackson, whose Senate Bill 2622 has advanced to the House. House Bill 482 is still pending in a House committee.

Clarion Ledger