PUBLIC POLICY ACTION ALERT!
House Bill 911- the bill to make strangulation a felony offense in Georgia - is scheduled for a vote
TOMORROW in the full House.
Please contact your Representative and urge them to vote YES on House Bill 911!
Making that call is quick and easy! Click HERE to find you Representative’s contact information.
Thank you for your advocacy!!
The facts about strangulation
- Strangulation assault is extremely dangerous and is very common in abusive relationships.
- Over 44% of domestic violence victims served by Georgia’s state-certified domestic violence programs have been strangled, according to a recent survey.
- Strangulation assault interrupts blood flow through the brain, resulting in permanent brain damage and loss of consciousness in as little as ten seconds with as little as four pounds of pressure. Death can occur within minutes.
- Even a single strangulation assault can cause short and long-term health consequences for victims, including shortness of breath, nausea and vomiting, involuntary urination and defecation, recurrent headaches and neck pain, memory loss, PTSD, and even seizures and strokes.
- Strangulation assault is a major predictor of eventual homicide.
- Victims of prior attempted strangulation are eight times more likely to be killed by the same abuser.
- Strangulation assault is difficult to prosecute under current Georgia law.
- Under current law, charges often are not brought for strangulation assault. If charges are filed, they are typically for a misdemeanor offense.
- HB 911 will add language to our existing aggravated assault statute to make this crime a felony offense, enabling prosecutors to prosecute this crime more successfully and seek a sentence that reflects the seriousness of this offense.
- HB 911 will not create a new crime. It will simply provide clear elements for an existing offense that involves dangerous and potentially lethal force.
- 37 other states have already passed laws making strangulation assault as a felony offense, including Alabama, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Florida.
- HB 911 will increase victim safety, hold perpetrators accountable for the crimes they commit, and prevent future homicides.
HB 911 is supported by:
Georgia Commission on Family Violence
Georgia Network to End Sexual Assault
Georgia Association of Solicitors-General
District Attorneys’ Association of Georgia
Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police