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Maine Victims of Crime – We Need Your Stories

By August 21, 2017Maine
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Have you been a victim of crime in Maine?  Did you have all the rights throughout the legal process that you should have?   As it stands now, it is not a requirement that a victim be notified of public proceedings at which the victim has a right to be heard, the right to confer with the prosecution, the right to prompt and full restitution, and more.

The Victim’s Bill of Rights, known as Marsy’s Law, has been introduced in Maine, and we need your help telling Maine legislators and voters how important this is.  This law would amend the state’s constitution to create equal rights for victims of crime.

We must get a bill passed in the Maine Legislature.  Then, it will be placed on a ballot for approval by Maine citizens.  In order for this to happen, we are looking for you and others who are victims to tell your stories about how the perpetrator was advised of his constitutional rights, while you, the victim, had none.

In order to succeed, we need at least a two-thirds majority of legislators to vote in favor of Marsy’s Law when they reconvene in the upcoming year. Only then can it be placed on the ballot for the November 2018 election.  If this happens, all that is needed from the voters is a simple majority to pass.

This is a bipartisan bill, sponsored by the Maine Senate President, Mike Thibodeau (R-Waldo), and the House Majority Leader, Erin Herbig (D-Belfast). Click here for more information regarding the bill, L.D. 1168.

Take Action:

  • If you are willing to share your story with legislators and others, contact me within the next two weeks.
  • Stay informed of any events you can attend in support of Marsy’s Law.
  • Click here to find both your Senate and House members’ names and contact information.  Let them know why you support Marsy’s Law, L.D. 1168. Remember to let them known that you are a member of Concerned Women for America of Maine.
  • Pass this information on to friends and family and ask them to participate.

Pray:  Please pray for the success of Marsy’s Law to help victims of crime.  “Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act.” (Proverbs 3:27)

Summary of Bill: This resolution proposes to amend the Constitution of Maine to enact a Victims’ Bill of Rights, designed to ensure specific rights for victims of crime.  The purpose of this resolution is to place into the Constitution of Maine various rights regarding notification of public proceedings at which the victim has a right to be heard, the right to confer with the prosecution and the right to prompt and full restitution.  This resolution requires a court to grant a request by the victim to enforce the rights of the victim and to provide a remedy for violations of the victim’s rights, including the appeal of a sentence.  This resolution does not provide a victim a cause of action for compensation or damages against the State or a political subdivision of the State, including the courts, or any officer, employee or agent of the State or a political subdivision of the State.

To view other victims’ testimonies, click here.

Click here for more information about Marsy’s Law.

Thank you for helping CWA of Maine empower victims of crime to receive the rights they deserve by sharing your story and by promoting this bill to legislators and voters.

Penny Morrell

State Director
CWA of Maine
(207) 465-6015