Will Lisa’s Law Protect Victims of Domestic Violence? [POLL]
Often enough we hear stories of how domestic violence victims have restraining orders against their assailants, only to have those orders ignored, and the violence continue.
Now a new law is being proposed that would set up a pilot program to electronically monitor someone who’s either been convicted of committing an act of domestic violence or who’s undergone a risk assessment and is likely to repeat such behavior.
The law that's being proposed is called Lisa's Law...brought about by friends of Letizia “Lisa” Zindell of Toms River, who was killed by her then fiancée, Frank Frisco, upon being let out of jail for violating a restraining order.
And like many laws that either have been proposed or signed into law, it bears someone's name...which I've always felt trivializes them.
However, this one might be different.
Do you feel such a law would protect the victims of domestic violence from those that would do them harm.
The law would appropriate $1 million from the state treasury to establish a four-year monitoring pilot program in Ocean County.
Primary sponsors in the Assembly include Democrat Troy Singleton of Burlington County and Republican Ronald Dancer of Ocean.
Judges during the pilot period could order electronic monitoring of someone who is likely to repeat physically abusive behavior after having been previously convicted for domestic violence, or who has violated a domestic violence restraining order and undergone a risk assessment hearing to determine the likelihood of causing physical harm. If electronic monitoring is required, victims would receive notification if their offender is nearby.
An earlier version of the proposal would have established a permanent law throughout the state.
Singleton said the bill will later this month again undergo “a few minor amendments, primarily addressing cost issues,’’ but is on track to get a full Assembly vote by March.
“Some folks blinked a bit at the costs and we’ve taken a long look at the numbers to make it more palatable,” Singleton said.
It looks like a good law from my view, but then again, I always wonder about the unintended consequences of legislation like this…and whether or not all the possible scenarios have been worked out.
Who will be doing the monitoring? And when monitoring is in place, the intended victim is simply “notified” when their possible assailant is nearby. Shouldn’t more be done if that’s the case?
And of course, there’s that little issue of “the cost!”
It is, however, a pilot program, and it is being tried out in Ocean County alone, so it’s worth the time and effort to see how it works there before being expanded statewide.