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An update from Lou Anna Red Corn (7/13/2017)

From the Office of Lou Anna RedCorn
Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney
Hello!  We are working hard enforcing the laws, helping crime victims, and striving to keep Lexington a safe and healthy place to live.  Here is an update on recent changes in the law and what’s happening in our office.  
2017 New Kentucky Laws
Most of the new laws from the 2017 Session became effective June 29, 2017. These are some that will affect public safety and victims statewide:
HB 333 stiffens the penalty for trafficking in heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil.  Now selling any amount of these opioids/synthetic opioids and their derivatives is a class C felony, which is a 5-10 year sentence. Traffickers of these drugs will not be eligible for probation, but will be eligible for parole after serving 50% of their sentence.  (Previously the penalty was a class D felony, 1-5 years for less than 2 grams, probation was allowed, and parole eligibility was 15%.)
HB 222 eliminates shock probation for individuals convicted of DUI homicides manslaughter second degree or reckless homicide, and the equivalent degree of fetal homicide.  These are homicides which carry a penalty of 1-10 years.  Before this change in the law, a person convicted of these offenses could request release from custody (“shocked”) after serving between 30 and 180 days of the imposed sentence. The lead sponsor of the bill was State Rep. Robert Benvenuti III, of Lexington.
HB 67prohibits the release of autopsy images, videos or recordings, except under specific circumstances, thereby protecting the privacy rights of the deceased and their family.   
HB 38 prohibits sex offenders from being in a publicly-owned playground unless they have advanced written permission to be on site by the government body (city council, etc.) that oversees the playground.
For a summary of all new legislation, see the Department of Criminal Justice Training Center’s Summary.

Prosecutors Giving Back

This spring, we participated in a state-wide campaign to help reduce hunger.  Through the encouragement and cajoling of Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorneys Taylor Brown and Katie Webster, our office raised over 16,000 pounds of food for the Kentucky Association of Food Banks by collecting food and volunteering at God’s Pantry. This was far more than any other agency in the state making us the Winners of the Legal Food Frenzy Government Division. 
Our cleverly-crafted
Government and
Services division trophy created by  Katie Webster!
On Saturday morning we wrapped thousands of “hot pockets” at God’s Pantry.
House Bill 40:  

In 2016, the General Assembly passed a felony expungement law allowing certain Class D felonies to be wiped off a convict’s record. Since July of 2016, our office has received 214 petitions from persons convicted of felonies in Fayette County, requesting to have their convictions expunged.  One-hundred fifty petitions were granted, but sixty-four were denied after we showed the judges that those convictions did not qualify for expungement.  To learn more about what it means to have a conviction expunged visit the  Kentucky Court of Justice website.

All of the Advocates representing the host agencies of our Victims’ Rights event.
Recognizing Crime Victims’ Rights

Prosecutors, Victims’ Advocates, Law Enforcement, Community Partners, Crime Victims and Survivors observed Crime Victims’ Rights Week in April with a resource fair and luncheon at the Fayette Circuit Courthouse. The program was a collaboration between the Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney, the Fayette County Attorney, the United States Attorney, the Fayette County Sheriff, and the Lexington Police. Five individuals were honored: Catie Embry, David Marye, Kelly Wells, Diana Ross and Leticia Hagerman. Advocates from all of the agencies were recognized and April Ballentine, a crime survivor, shared her inspirational story. 

Lou Anna RedCorn
Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney
116 N Upper Street, Lexington, KY 40507

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