The California Senate has unanimously approved a bill intended to reduce the number of prison inmates with access to cell phones. The legislation by Democratic State Senator Alex Padilla would create new penalties for those who smuggle phones in to prisoners as well as the inmates who receive them.
Padilla says it’s a problem that has grown out of control over the past few years and is a threat to public safety.
“We don’t just suspect, we know,” said Padilla, “that inmates are using cell phones to order murders, organize escapes, facilitate drug trafficking, control street gangs and terrorize victims.”
Under the bill, people caught smuggling a phone into prison would face up to six months in jail and a five thousand dollar fine. Inmates caught with phones would face the loss of good time credits.