After the heartbreaking story of Gabby Petito’s death gripped the nation in 2021, two Florida state legislators filed a bill to strengthen domestic violence prevention efforts in the Sunshine State.
Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book and Rep. Robin Bartleman filed the “Gabby Petito Act” after the initiative was brought forward by Gabby’s father, Joseph Petito.
The bill proposes a new statewide mandate that would require all law enforcement officers to complete a lethality assessment when investigating domestic violence incidents.
“We know in different places throughout the country where lethality assessments are used. Even here in our great state, where they’re used in pockets, we know that it reduces the incidence of a lethal situation,” Book said to FOX 13. “In Maryland, where we’ve kind of seen a lot of this work being done, it reduces the lethality by 35 to 45 percent.”
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The Spring of Tampa Bay, a non-profit organization that assists domestic violence survivors, worked with the legislators as well at Petito’s dad.
The president and CEO of The Spring of Tampa Bay, Mindy Murphy, said that if passed, the legislation could establish a