Matt Potter 4:39 p.m., April 22
The Governor Signs Kehoe's Strangulation Bill Into Law
On July 27, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law that would add jail time for spouses and partners who strangle or chokes their significant others.
The bill was sponsored by State Senator Christine Kehoe. Kehoe drafted the bill shortly after the death of National City resident Diana Gonzalez in October of 2010. Gonzalez's death came more than a year after she obtained a restraining order against her husband for trying to suffocate her. The charges, however, were dropped.
“Almost half of domestic violence homicide victims experienced at least one episode of attempted strangulation before experiencing a lethal or near-lethal violent incident, and victims of attempted strangulation are seven times more likely to become homicide victims,” said Kehoe in a July 27 statement. “By providing a guide for judges and juries about addressing this violence in domestic violence cases, lives will be saved and surviving victims will enter a more informed and responsive criminal justice system.”
In addition to possibly adding more jail time, the bill aims to educate jurors on the dangers of strangulation.
“This measure will save lives in the years to come,” was the statement from Gael Strack, Chief Executive Officer of the Alliance and founder of the national Strangulation Training Institute. “This law will give police officers and prosecutors the tools they need to hold abusers accountable before they kill.”