Raleigh – Joined by members of Britny Puryear’s family, Governor Roy Cooper signed several domestic violence prevention bills into law today. Governor Cooper signed Senate Bill 600: Britny's Law: IPV Homicide, House Bill 343: Enforcement of Domestic Violence Protection Order on Appeal, and House Bill 399: Stop Images Taken Without Consent From Dissemination into law.
In 2014, Britny Puryear was shot and killed by her boyfriend who was her child’s father. Puryear’s family worked with members of the General Assembly and domestic violence prevention community to get Britny’s Law passed.
“Domestic violence is a crime that destroys families and lives,” said Gov. Cooper. “These new laws give survivors of domestic violence more ways to protect themselves, and law enforcement and prosecutors more tools to hold perpetrators of domestic violence responsible for their crimes.”
According to the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 82 people lost their lives due to domestic violence last year in North Carolina. And this year, domestic violence has taken the lives of 37 North Carolinians.
“Too often domestic violence killers escape full justice, because prosecutors struggle to convince juries that these offenders’ crimes meet the definition of first degree murder under current law. We must keep working to ensure those who commit the crime of domestic violence face the justice they deserve,” said Gov. Cooper
At the bill signing, Gov. Cooper was joined by Britny’s family, advocates for survivors of domestic violence, legislators, and law enforcement.
The other bills signed today will also aid in the fight against domestic violence.
Gov. Cooper signed House Bill 343, a measure that will allow domestic violence protective orders granted by a judge to take full effect even when under appeal. Advocates and law enforcement expect this new law to bolster protective orders that can help protect survivors from ongoing domestic violence.
Domestic violence perpetrators also attack their victims online. To combat the sharing and posting of private images without victims’ consent, Gov. Cooper signed House Bill 399. The new law closes a gap in existing law that will allow law enforcement and prosecutors to take action to help more victims.