For Immediate Release: May 2, 2007
Senate Gives Final Okay to ‘Taylor’s
The full Senate has given final approval to a
bill allowing relatives of murder victims to wear buttons displaying
a picture of their loved one in the courtroom. Sen. Jim Reynolds
is principal author of Senate Bill 868, known as “Taylor’s
Law.” Reynolds said it was a victim’s rights issue.
“Usually, the only images seen of the victim
in court are the crime scene photos,” Reynolds said. “Their
families want to be able to remember them as they were in life—not
just homicide victims. They should have that right.”
SB 868 would require courts to allow immediate
family members of a murder victim to wear photo buttons. Those
buttons could be up to four inches in diameter. Reynolds said
as the result of a case out of California, the U.S. Supreme
Court had previously ruled unanimously in favor of allowing
families to wear such buttons in court.
One of the biggest proponents of this measure
is LaDonna Heintzelman of Oklahoma City. Her son, Taylor, was
murdered in 2005. Reynolds said since that time, Heintzelman
has become a strong victim’s rights advocate.
“The man accused of killing her son is
expected to stand trial in June. LaDonna wants the right to
honor her son’s life by wearing a button with his picture
on it,” Reynolds said.
The measure now goes to Gov. Brad Henry for his
consideration. The bill would become law immediately upon the
For more information contact:
Senator Reynold's Office: (405) 521-5522