AB 1748: Chelsea’s Law
HB 8 (Jessica’s Law), which was signed into law in 2007, made offenders convicted of a second serious sexual offense against children eligible for the death penalty or life without parole, increased the penalties for certain sex crimes against young children, prohibited release from prison on parole or mandatory supervision for certain repeat sex offenders and others with child victims, extended the time frame in which criminal charges can be filed for certain sex offenses with child victims, and placed certain requirements on the tracking of sex offenders under the state’s civil commitment program.
HB 1748 (Chelsea’s Law) would further enhance Jessica’s Law by providing for a true one-strike life without parole sentence for adult offenders who brutally rape children under the age of 14. Simply put, this legislation would prevent a second child from being raped before the state could ask for life without parole.
Chelsea King was a 17-year-old high school student from San Diego, California who will always be remembered by her community for her compassionate heart and positive spirit. Whether she was helping plan a prom for developmentally disabled youth, packing relief boxes for those in need in Africa or serving as a peer counselor at her school, there was very little Chelsea wouldn’t do to be helpful and kind to others.
On Thursday, February 25, 2010, Chelsea disappeared after going for an afternoon run in a local park. Law enforcement and thousands of volunteers searched for days, until they finally found her by a lake. She was the victim of a terrible crime. A man who was convicted of violently molesting a 13-year-old in 2000, but was freed after only five years in prison, pled guilty to the rape and murder of Chelsea King as well as that of Amber Dubois, a who went missing the previous year.
In California, the circumstances which lead to the tragic death of Chelsea King can never be repeated as a result of the approval of Chelsea’s Law. In 2010, with support from the King family and thousands of grassroots supporters, legislation was introduced to create a true one strike provision for violent sex acts committed against children. Chelsea’s Shield, the sponsor of HB 1748, is now working to pass Chelsea’s Law in all 50 states.
HB 1748 Chelsea’s Law includes a new one-strike life without parole penalty for those sexual predators who commit the most heinous violent sex crimes against a child. Violent sexual predators who target children are a uniquely dangerous problem. HB 1748 Chelsea’s Law ensures that the state does everything it can to keep those convicted of sex crimes of this nature from engaging in even more atrocious crimes upon release, and that those who commit the worst violent sexual crimes against children are put away for life.
Representatives: Dan Branch, Abel Herrero, Allen Fletcher, Stefani Carter and James White
For an up to date status, click here : http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/BillStages.aspx?LegSess=83R&Bill=HB1748
We need your help! Help us protect children and make a difference in Texas by passing Chelsea’s Law. If you can contact legislators on our behalf, write letters of support, and help us get the word out about this legislation, contact Jennifer Perkins. We only have a short window of time to pass Chelsea’s Law in Texas. A few hours of your time could help preserve the innocence of many children in the years to come.