Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Hosts Victims’ Rights Day Rally In Capitol Rotunda
Attorney General Jack Conway today hosted the seventeenth annual Kentucky Crime Victims’ Rights Day Rally in the Capitol Rotunda. The rally is part of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 14 - 18. This year’s theme is “Justice for Victims – Justice for All.”
Featured speakers included General Conway, Christina Gooch and Mark Neblett. Gooch is the sister of Nicole Hadley, who was killed by Michael Carneal in 1997 during the Heath High School massacre. Gooch spoke about the way this tragedy changed her family and why she is now helping promote organ donor awareness. Neblett lost his daughter in 2005 when she committed suicide after being stalked and bullied online. Neblett is one of the confounders of Make a Difference for Kids, which promotes awareness and prevention of cyberbullying and suicide. Mark has been an advocate for General Conway’s cybersafety legislation that protects children from online predators and amends Kentucky statutes to make cyberstalking a crime. Neblett has also been an active proponent of House Bill 91, which addresses bullying in the public schools.
“The crime victims featured at this year’s rally are a living testament to families across this Commonwealth who turn tragedies into opportunities for change,” General Conway said. “Victims have been the driving force behind strengthening Kentucky’s Driving Under the Influence (DUI) laws, creating the V.I.N.E. notification system, passing Megan’s Law and pushing truth-in-sentencing requirements.”
The first National Crime Victims’ Rights Week was in 1981. Since then, the field of victims’ rights and services has contributed to many accomplishments that enhance individual and community safety. Today, there are more than 10,000 justice system and community-based programs that inform and educate victims about their rights, and provide supportive services to help them cope with the physical, emotional, financial and spiritual impact of crime. More than 32,000 laws have been passed at the state and federal levels that define and protect victims’ rights, including the Kentucky Crime Victims’ Bill of Rights (KRS 421.500-421.575).
“I hope that people will take time to remember Kentucky families this week who have been the victims of violent crimes,” General Conway said. “I work each and every day to make sure those victims have a voice.”
Advocates, victims, families of victims, law-enforcement officers, prosecutors and volunteers attended today’s rally. It was also open to the public.
A reception on the second floor of the Capitol followed the event.
Photos from the event are available here.