Marsy’s Law for Ohio Receives Bipartisan Support From State Lawmakers

COLUMBUS – Marsy’s Law for Ohio is proud to announce a bipartisan coalition of state lawmakers has joined our movement to enshrine equal rights for crime victims in the Ohio Constitution this November.

With signature-gathering efforts in full stride across Ohio, more than a dozen lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have endorsed the crime victim bill of rights contained in Marsy’s Law.

“We are excited to have so many lawmakers join the growing wave of support sweeping Ohio for Marsy’s Law,” said Trevor Vessels, state director for Marsy’s Law for Ohio. “They understand the importance of granting equal rights to crime victims in Ohio.”

Led by Senate Judiciary Chairman Kevin Bacon and former House Speaker Larry Householder, a total of 16 current members of the Ohio legislature have endorsed the Marsy’s Law for Ohio constitutional amendment. (See the full list at bottom of release.)

The state lawmakers join a growing coalition of support that includes local law-enforcement officials, county prosecutors, local elected officials and crime victim advocacy organizations in every corner of the state.

If voters approve the proposal this fall, Marsy’s Law for Ohio would grant a series of constitutional protections to crime victims and their immediate families for the first time in Ohio’s history.

Under the Marsy’s Law for Ohio amendment, crime victims would have the right to notification of all proceedings and guaranteed the right to be heard at every step of the legal process. It also grants victims the right to input on all plea deals for offenders as well as the right to restitution resulting from the financial impact of the crime.

The effort to gather the 305,591 valid signatures needed to place Marsy’s Law for Ohio on the 2017 fall ballot comes after similar ballot issues were approved in California, Illinois, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota and Montana.

The Marsy’s Law movement began in 1983, when a young woman named Marsy Nicholas was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend. Only a week after her murder, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they saw the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, had no idea the accused murderer had been released on bail.

Ohio lawmakers endorsing Marsy’s Law for Ohio include:

  • Rep. Mike Ashford, D-Toledo
  • Rep. Jim Butler, R-Oakwood
  • Rep. Mike Duffey, R-Worthington
  • Rep. Jay Edwards, R-Athens
  • Rep. Teresa Fedor, D-Toledo
  • Rep. Anne Gonzales, R-Westerville
  • Rep. Larry Householder, R-Glenford
  • Rep. Stephanie Howse, D-Cleveland
  • Rep. Steve Huffman, R-Tipp City
  • Rep. Candice Keller, R-Middletown
  • Rep. Bill Patmon, D-Cleveland
  • Rep. Ryan Smith, R-Gallipolis
  • Sen. Kevin Bacon, R-Minerva Park
  • Sen. Bob Hackett, R-London
  • Sen. Cliff Hite, R-Findlay
  • Sen. Frank LaRose, R-Copley