RBOC-supported legislation to authorize a peace officer or marine safety offer to remove a vessel from public property when the vessel has been used in a crime or provides evidence of a crime has passed the Senate Public Safety Committee with unanimous, bipartisan support and now proceeds to the Senate Floor [Senate Third Reading] for consideration.
The provisions of AB 2175 [Aguiar-Curry] as per the committee analysis would allow a peace officer or marine safety officer to impound a vessel in either of the following circumstances:
- When the vessel is found on public property and the officer has probable cause to believe that it was used in the commission of a crime; or
- When the vessel is found on public property and the officer has probable cause to believe that the vessel itself provides evidence that a crime was committed, or it contains evidence of a possible crime and the evidence cannot be easily removed from it.
The bill states that a lien shall not attach to a vessel impounded under this section unless it is determined that it was used in the commission of a crime with the express or implied consent of the owner.
The bill also allows the court to order a person convicted of a crime involving the use of the impounded vessel to pay for the costs of towing and storage, as well as any administrative charges related to the removal, impoundment, storage, or release of the vessel.
Finally, the bill defines “vessel” for the purposes of the section to include both the vessel and any trailer used by the operator to transport the vessel.
AB 2175 has already passed the Assembly. It is sponsored by the California State Sheriff's Association.