After the surprising not-guilty verdict in the Casey Anthony trial, legislatures have drafted a bill known as "Caylee's Law" for the state of Tennessee.
Under the current law, parents are required to report to the police that their child is missing, but do not suffer any penalties if they fail to do so. Caylee's Law will make it a Class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a $2,500 fine if a parent fails to report a missing child within 48 hours of the child's disappearance. Further, if the child experiences serious bodily injury or death during the course of their disappearance, the offense upgrades to a Class C felony punishable by three to fifteen years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
State Representative Craig Fitzhugh said he drafted the bill in response to the many emails he received from concerned Tennessee citizens following last week's verdict. Many citizens in Tennessee and around the country were outraged by the verdict, believing Casey had to have done something to Caylee or else she wouldn't have waited 31 days to report her as missing. Naturally, this sparked an online movement to enforce laws like "Caylee's Law" to prevent another situation like Caylee's.
Tennessee joins more than a dozen different states which have drafted different versions of "Caylee's Law." Lawmakers will consider the bill when the legislature comes back into session in January.
Richard Locker of the Commercial Appeal reported on this topic today.