Crime is everywhere, in every state and every town. More and more, it seems to be getting worse. We have laws right here in Billings just like everywhere else but the problem is criminals don't care what the law is and they have no respect for it.

How do we detour criminals from committing wrongful acts? Stronger punishments? Different punishments? Paying them? Right...

They say crime doesn't pay, but that might not be entirely true in the District of Columbia as lawmakers look for ways to discourage people from becoming repeat offenders.

Last year, the D.C. Council voted unanimously to approve a bill to pay residents not to commit crimes. It's based on a program in Richmond, California that advocates say has contributed to deep reductions in crime there.

The bill says city officials would identify up to 200 people a year who are considered at risk of either committing or becoming victims of violent crime. Those people would be directed to participate in behavioral therapy and other programs. If they fulfill those obligations and stay out of trouble, they would be paid.

Is this the answer to our criminal problems? I  have a hard time swallowing a pill that says we need to use taxpayer money to pay criminals to stay out of trouble. My parents didn't pay me to be good. When I did wrong I got my butt kicked and learned my lesson.

What do you think? Do you think paying criminals would decrease Billings' crime rate? 248-5665

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