Marsy’s Law Passes Senate Judiciary Committee

For Immediate Release

Feb. 24, 2017


Marsy’s Law Passes Senate Judiciary Committee


Marsy’s Law, legislation that would add crime victims’ rights to the state constitution, passed the state Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday by an overwhelming margin and now heads to the Rules Committee.

“Crime victims in Georgia are one step closer to having constitutional rights that put them on equal footing in the eyes of the law with those accused of harming them,” said Ann Casas, the State Director for Marsy’s Law. “The right to notifications, the right to be heard in court or at a parole hearing, the right to restitution, these are fundamental rights in my view, and fundamental rights belong in the constitution.”

Georgia enacted a Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights into statute in 2010, and while many jurisdictions faithfully carry out these responsibilities, there is currently no recourse for victims whose rights are violated.

“Crime victims across Georgia who have come face to face with the shortcomings of our system appreciate the leadership shown by the sponsor, Sen. John Kennedy (R-Macon), and other members of the Judiciary Committee,” said Casas. “People who have felt voiceless now feel heard, and the victim community hopes to see the protections in this bill strengthened on the floor of the Senate to more closely reflect Sen. Kennedy’s original proposal. 

“Opponents of Marsy’s Law have insisted throughout this process that these protections will place an undue burden on our legal system. The fact is, that doesn’t seem to pose a problem in the 35 states that already have constitutional rights for victims. It does us no good to have strong rights in law if they aren’t enforceable.” 

Marsy’s Law for Georgia could come before the Senate Rules Committee as early as Tuesday.