Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee,
I am writing on behalf of the Arizona Fraternal Order of Police, who respectfully encourage you to support the passage of HB2484. HB2484 passed out of the House on February 28th.
ARS 13-1813 states that a person commits a Class 6 felony for missing a car payment for more than 90 days and who does not voluntarily return the vehicle to the lien holder.
This statute shows the vehicle as "Stolen" for law enforcement when the vehicle's license plate information comes back from the national database. A sentence at the bottom of the license plate information says the vehicle is a security-interest vehicle. However, for younger officers, officers that may rarely come across them, or for out-of-state officers, this can lead to perilous situations who may not know the vehicle as anything other than a "stolen" vehicle.
Numerous stories involve bringing entire families out at gunpoint because the vehicle shows "stolen," putting the families and police in harm's way. For those families, their only crime is missing car payments per this statute.
This statute requires police to become repossession men or women for the lien holders, and no other lien necessitates police to act in this manner. It requires police to treat what should be a civil issue as a criminal offense.
HB2484 addresses this issue by repealing the statute and returning it to the civil laws where it belongs. The Arizona Fraternal Order of Police/Arizona Labor Council encourages your support of HB2484 which will repeal the statute and help police and families across Arizona.