Lawmaker calls for more prison time for Bronx gang members

An elected official is pushing for new legislation that would toughen penalties for gang members who wreak havoc in the Bronx.

Assemblyman Peter Rivera (D-Bronx) has introduced a bill that would give gang members an additional two to five years for non-violent crimes like burglary. The measure also calls for 10 more years behind bars for violent crimes like murder.

Police say a gang called Locos recently beat up and stabbed a teen for riding his bike through their territory in Belmont. The Bronx District Attorney?s Office says gang-related crime continues to increase in the borough. Officials say the number has risen from a total of 618 in 2004 to 388 so far for 2006. Leaders believe more programs are needed to occupy children.

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