'John schools' bill passes, moves to governor

1:56 PM, May 11, 2011   |    comments
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The House passed the full bill on Wednesday afternoon. It had passed the Senate on Tuesday.

Currently, some jurisdictions fine johns $100 if they are caught soliciting a prostitute. The new law hits them with a $5,000 fine in state court and up to a $1,000 fine in municipal court.

The bill also includes a separate option for first-time offenders. They can take a class that educates them on the long-term impact of prostitution. If they take the class, they plead guilty to solicitation, but when they complete the program, that case is dismissed, and it does not stay on their permanent record.

Supporters of the bill say it is modeled after one in San Francisco where the number of repeat offenders dropped after classes began.

Opponents say the bill isn't backed by enough research, and lawmakers should instead be funding mental health services and drug treatment services.

(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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