Ohio Lawmakers Pass Aisha's Law Named After Domestic Violence Victim Killed By Her Ex-Husband
The legislation is expected to change how domestic violence cases are handled.
October 28, 2021 at 5:30 pm
Ohio lawmakers passed new legislation that will enforce tougher penalties on domestic violence suspects. House Bill 3, also being called Aisha's Law, was named after a prominent teacher in Shaker Heights who was killed by her ex-husband in 2018, Cleveland.com reports.
Aisha Fraser, a sixth-grade teacher, was stabbed 59 times by her husband, Lance Mason, in front of their kids. Mason was a former county judge and state lawmaker. He was charged with her death and later sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
On Wednesday, the Ohio House of Representatives voted in favor of the bill 91 to 2. The same bill had previously been introduced on the House floor in 2020 but never made it to the Senate. Now, the legislation is expected to change how domestic violence cases are handled.
Police will be required to conduct an assessment to determine if a victim is likely to be killed by their abuser. According to a study, domestic violence victims who are strangled are more likely to be killed by their partners.
The bill will expand its definition of domestic violence to include strangulation and will provide survivors temporary protection orders if a case is filed outside of court hours, WKYC reports.
According to WCPO, the bill also will expand to include previous domestic violence convictions.
Additionally, officers could refer survivors to domestic violence resources and services, which bill co-sponsor State Rep. Janine Boyd said could help save lives.
“I’m proud to sponsor such a comprehensive legislation to lift the voices of those too long undervalued or ignored. Nothing prepared me for the way Aisha’s story and the stories of other survivors have changed me. I am extraordinarily grateful to my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for overwhelmingly supporting this bill, bringing us closer to no longer being the only state without a strangulation law," Boyd said.
"Aisha’s Law will strengthen protections for survivors and provide a way out for those who are in the most deadly situations. We are one step closer to honoring Aisha’s life and light, and so many others with today’s House passage," she added.
In 2014, Mason was suspended from practicing law after beating Fraser in front of their children as they were leaving a funeral, according to WCPO. He was charged and subsequently sentenced to two years in prison, but was released after nine months. According to WKYC, a former incident had also forced the teacher to receive reconstructive surgery.
The bill will now head to the Senate for consideration.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE (7233).