Nixon Lets Criminal Code Overhaul Become Law
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is allowing a massive overhaul of the state's criminal laws to take effect without his signature.
Nixon faced a Tuesday deadline to act on the legislation that creates new classes of felonies and misdemeanors. The Democratic governor had expressed concern that the measure could contain mistakes and was too ambitious. But he said his concerns were alleviated when supporters agreed to immediately advance a separate bill to correct some drafting errors. The legislative session ends Friday.
The measure reduces possible prison sentences for some nonviolent drug crimes, while imposing stiffer penalties in other areas like sexual assaults and driving while intoxicated.
The bill's provisions will take effect in January 2017. It's the first comprehensive rewrite of Missouri's criminal code since 1979.