Friday, April 24, 2009

Representative Porth's Bill Gives Hope to Victims' Families

From the House Dems:

Legislation sponsored by Representative Ari Abraham Porth (D-Coral Springs) to lift the statute of limitations for wrongful death actions won tentative approval in the Florida House today.

House Bill 111 creates the Jeffrey Klee Memorial Act, which would allow civil claims to be filed by families of victims of murder or manslaughter regardless of when the crimes occurred.

The legislation stems from the case of Jeffrey Klee, whose family waited three decades for answers about the Broward County man’s disappearance. While the legislation is not retroactive and won’t benefit the Klee family, it is expected to bring hope to other victims’ families.

In 1977, Jeffrey Klee, then 18, graduated from high school. The former football quarterback and basketball center was expected to take over his father’s lawn service. On July 12, 1977, he disappeared. Thirty-one years passed before the Coral Springs Police Department found his remains at the bottom of a canal. David Cusanelli, the man who allegedly killed and buried Klee, lives free today – and free from prosecution and civil justice.

“It is my hope that this law will give families the opportunity for justice that the Klee family never received,” said Representative Porth. “It is tragic what happened to Jeffrey Klee, and no family should be barred or delayed the opportunity to pursue justice in the way that the Klee family has endured.”

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