By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)
When convicted murderer Jeffrey Willis was allowed to leave the courtroom before family and friends spoke after Willis was found guilty of murdering Rebekah Bletsch last fall, people were pissed.
The Muskegon County Sheriff got creative, burning the statements to a CD and forcing Willis to listen to them repeatedly while being transported to another facility.
State Rep. Holly Hughes took legislative action, penning a bill that forces murderers like Willis to have to listen to those they have impacted the most.
The bill was passed by both chambers, signed by the Governor, and is now the law in the state of Michigan.
The legislation is a win for crime victims, and it gives Hughes some earned media as she battles popular former State Rep. Jon Bumstead in a heated State Senate primary. The bill is also a legislative accomplishment that can be easily explained and touted on the campaign trail.
According to MLive:
"Convicted criminals now must listen to victim impact statements at sentencing hearings.