Bills signed to protect Michganders from porch thieves

MGN Porch Pirates
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LANSING, MI (WILX) - Stealing a package off of your neighbor's porch is now a crime.

Governor Whitmer signed into law SB23 and 24 which protect against mail theft.

The bills enact the "Mail and Mail Depository Protection Act" which:
-- prohibits a person from taking certain actions with respect to mail that was addressed to another person.
-- allows a person to assert one or more specified affirmative defenses to an alleged violation of the proposed Act.
-- prescribes misdemeanor and felony penalties for violations of the proposed Act.

Under this act a person could not:
- knowingly and intentionally remove mail from a mail depository (mailbox, letter box, post office, postal service vehicle)
- knowingly and intentionally take mail from a mail carrier
- obtain custody of mail by intentionally deceiving a mail carrier, or other person who rightfully possessed or controlled the mail
- by making a written, verbal, or electronic representation that the person knew to be false with intent to deceive and actually deceive a mail carrier or other person who possessed or controlled the mail
- knowingly and intentionally remove the contents of mail
- knowingly and intentionally take mail that had been left for delivery at the location specified on the mail
- knowingly and intentionally take mail that had been left for collection on or adjacent to a mail depository
- knowingly and intentionally destroy or damage mail
- receive, possess, transfer, or conceal mail, knowing or having reason to believe the mail was obtained in violation of the Act or in a manner that was otherwise prohibited by the State or Federal law

Anyone caught violating the act and stealing mail or packages would be guilty of a crime.
-- A misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for up to one year or a maximum fine of $500, or both.

-- A felony punishable by up to five years' imprisonment or a maximum fine of $1,000, or both, if the violation were a second violation.

-- A felony punishable by up to 10 years' imprisonment or a maximum fine of $2,000, or both, if the violation were a third or subsequent violation.

-- A felony punishable by up to five years' imprisonment or a maximum fine of $1,000, or both, if the violation involved the theft of mail by a person with the intent to commit fraud.

Whitmer also signed into law Senate Bill 24, which is tied to SB23.

According to the release, this bill would have no fiscal impact on local government and an indeterminate fiscal impact on the State.

And, as penalties for felony convictions vary, the fiscal impact of any given felony conviction depends on judicial decisions.

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