From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay Feature
Fri Oct 6 2006
Gwen Araujo Justice for Victims Act Becomes Law
Nation’s First Law Addressing Use of Panic Strategies Signed by California Governor
The nation’s first bill to address use of panic strategies, the Gwen Araujo Justice for Victims Act (AB 1160), was signed into law on September 28th by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The bill was written by Assemblywoman Sally Lieber and sponsored by Equality California. It puts California firmly on record as opposing a defendant’s use of societal bias against their victim in order to decrease their own culpability for a crime.

Gwen Araujo, the bill’s namesake, was a 17 year old Newark, CA transgender teen who was murdered by four men in 2002. Three of the men utilized panic strategies when on trial for her murder in 2004. A 2005 Fresno County case against the killer of another transgender person, Joel Robles, ended in an alarming 4 year plea bargain. Newspaper reports quoted an Assistant District Attorney as attributing the light sentence, in part, to threatened use of panic strategies.

The bill also modifies an existing jury instruction and mandates the creation of practice materials for District Attorney’s offices. "Panic strategies are a cynical way for homicide defendants whose victims are members of a disfavored group to appeal to a jury’s worst impulses,” said Transgender Law Center Director Christopher Daley. “I’m overjoyed that the Governor saw fit to recognize that our state is one in which every person, including my daughter and other transgender people, must be valued," said Sylvia Guerrero, mother of Gwen Araujo. Read more

Transgender Law Center | Past coverage of AB 1160 | Indybay's coverage of sentencing | Past Coverage of verdict for two killers | Coverage of first trial
03/14/18 Sheriff's Chief Deputy Appointed to Santa Cruz Sentinel Editorial Board Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Media Activism & Independent Media | Santa Cruz Indymedia03/14/18 Anti-Houseless Stickers a "Team Effort" at Broprints Screen Printing Front Page | Health, Housing & Public Services | Drug War | Arts + Action | Santa Cruz Indymedia03/11/18 Historical Experiences of Native Children Inside U.S. Public Schools Front Page | Racial Justice | Education & Student Activism | Arts + Action | East Bay | Santa Cruz Indymedia03/10/18 Building Solidarity Against Trumped-up Repression Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Global Justice & Anti-Capitalism | East Bay | Santa Cruz Indymedia03/09/18 Everyday Militarisms of Life and Prosperity in the San Francisco Bay Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Anti-War | Education & Student Activism | East Bay | California03/05/18 Statewide Initiative Aims to Revoke Infamous Anti-Tenant Law Front Page | Health, Housing & Public Services | East Bay | California | Government & Elections03/03/18 Increased ICE Activity in Northern California Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Central Valley | San Francisco | South Bay | East Bay | North Coast | California | Immigrant Rights | Santa Cruz Indymedia03/03/18 Francisco Cantú, Ex-Border Patrol Agent, Confronted and Cancelled in Bay Area Front Page | Police State & Prisons | Arts + Action | San Francisco | East Bay | Immigrant Rights02/26/18 Exploring the Geographies and Histories of Social Change in New Orleans Front Page | Racial Justice | U.S.02/25/18 Nestlé and Others Cashing in on Misinformation and U.S. Water Infrastructure Crisis Front Page | Environment & Forest Defense | Health, Housing & Public Services | U.S.02/25/18 7th Annual Bay Area American Indian Two-Spirit PowWow Front Page | Racial Justice | LGBTI / Queer | Arts + Action | San Francisco
Related Categories: California | LGBTI / Queer