COLUMBUS — A bill making it tougher on people who assault children passed the Ohio Statehouse today by an 84-1 vote.
Randi Shepherd and her 13-year-old daughter Destiny were in the gallery when the vote passed, a victory 11 years in the making.
Destiny was 16 months old when she suffered brain damage from a skull fracture after being shaken and thrown against a wall by Terrance King. She was rushed to Dayton Children’s Hospital and put on life support, not expected to live.
King was released from state prison in 2014.
"Destiny received a life sentence while her attacker received eight years,” Randi told News Center 7’s James Buechele. “She has to pay the consequences for a crime she never committed when her attacker is able to do things without thought or consideration.”
Introduced in 2007, Destiny’s Law would increase penalties to anyone convicted of felony violence against a child under the age of 10.
Randi has spent over a decade waiting for the bill to make its way through legislature, but hopes it will give justice to other families.
“It’s been a struggle. There’s meetings, votings, it stalls, the bill expires, it’s been a really tough road,” Randi said.
The next step is concurrence within the Senate that could happen next week.