Kilah's Law receives unanimous support - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Kilah's Law receives unanimous support

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MONROE, NC (WBTV) -

The Union County Board of Commissioners on Monday unanimously passed a resolution supporting Kilah's Law which, if passed by the North Carolina General Assembly next session, will permit harsher sentencing for those who inflict permanent physical debilitating injury on a child.

The law is backed by Rep. Craig Horn, a Republican from Union County, Indian Trail Mayor Michael Alvarez and Union County resident and activist Jeff Gerber, who founded the Justice for All Coalition, a national group that advocates for tougher penalties in cases of violence against children and women.

The law is being sought because of the May 16 beating of three year old Kilah Davenport by her stepfather. As a result of the beating, the Union County girl sustained a broken clavicle, fractured skull, and damage to 90 percent of her brain.

The stepfather was arrested and charged with felony child abuse, inflicting serious bodily injury. He is currently in the Union County Jail under a $1 million bond.

If passed, the law will raise the sentencing guidelines for anyone who causes the permanent debilitating physical injury of a child. Currently this crime falls under a Class C felony with a 44-92 month possible sentence.

"It is our hope that we give the judicial system the tools it needs to implement a suitable punishment to fit the magnitude of the crime," Gerber said. "In this particular instance, we feel strongly that this type of horrific crime should fall in line with that of a child pedophile, meaning 25 years to life."

The Justice for all Coalition has traveled to three counties so far offering a resolution of support for Kilah's Law. "We've introduced this resolution to may town councils, and I'm proud to say this resolution has passed unanimously in every municipality," Gerber added.

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