Marsy’s Law: Seeking rights for crime victims

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – There’s new support for Marsy’s Law, the proposed law that would uphold basic rights for crime victims.

The Kentucky Baptist Convention announced its unanimous endorsement of the law on Monday.

Pastor Hershael York said in a press release, “As Christians, we are called to care for and protect those who are most vulnerable. Marsy’s Law helps accomplish that by ensuring that crime victims are given rights and treated with respect throughout the judicial process.”

Kentucky is one of only 14 states without constitutional rights for crime victims. That’s a problem that has hit home for Stella Moore.

Her 21-year-old grandson, Skylar Ray, was shot in 2016.

“He always had a smile on his face. That’s what I miss so much,” said Moore.

The 2016 shooting happened outside of Saddle Ridge Bar on South Broadway.

Police say a group of people were fighting in the parking lot and when they arrived on scene, they found Ray. He’d been shot.

Moore says the fight involved one of Ray’s friends.

“Skylar decided he needed to help that friend, and when he did, this man came up behind him and, from what I’ve been told, grabbed the back of his shirt and shot him point-blank in the back of the head,” said Moore.

Moore says Ray was paralyzed from the neck down and died four months after the shooting.

30-year-old Leslie Parson is charged with Ray’s murder.

Moore tells ABC 36 it’s been hard for her to get information about court dates and other areas of the judicial process.

She says she feels like suspects have more rights than victims.

What Marsy’s Law does is give victims and their families basic rights like the right to be heard, to know of proceedings, and to be at those proceedings.

“These are things that to an everyday person, without a victim in life, are not very important,” said Moore. “But, to those of us who have been affected, it is extremely important. We want to know these things.”

According to a press release from the group, Marsy’s Law for Kentucky, the law is expected to take priority in both the House and Senate when General Assembly starts in January.

To read more about Marsy’s Law, and what it would mean for Kentucky, click here.

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