What it is: Thousands of people--mostly teen-agers and children--have been killed or wounded in recent years in drive-by shootings. Under this proposition, the minimum sentence for a second-degree murder conviction in a drive-by shooting would be increased from 15 years to 20. The maximum sentence would still be life imprisonment. Under the state Constitution, it takes passage of a voter initiative to make the change because the original second-degree sentencing law was enacted by a vote of the people.
Arguments for: Drive-by shootings have become so frequent, particularly in the Los Angeles area, that tougher action must be taken against those who kill and maim from a passing car. This measure will ensure that drive-by killers get long prison sentences even if prosecutors cannot obtain first-degree murder convictions.