Mo. criminal code bill headed to Senate floor

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Senate leaders say legislation to revamp the state's criminal laws could be debated on the floor this week.

The bill's supporters say the current system can be confusing and contains too many specific crimes. The legislation would create new classes of felonies and misdemeanors and combine some offenses into single charges.

The criminal code was last revised in 1979, but since then lawmakers have continued to create crimes. Bill supporters say this has led to complexities and, in some instances, uneven punishment.

In their push to pass the bill, the measure's backers also are citing a high number of crimes that are charged only sparingly in a given year.

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