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California outlaws ‘gay panic’ defense

Jerry Brown

SACRAMENTO — Gov. Jerry Brown, Saturday signed into law a bill [AB 2501 ], prohibiting the so-called “gay panic” defense that has been used to reduce homicide charges to manslaughter, reports Jurist.org. The defense has been used by defendants who claimed that they were “panicked” into committing a crime due to a homosexual individual making an advance on them. Recently the defense has even been used in cases involving transgender individuals.

The bill, which will make California the first state to outright ban the defense, was passed by the California State Assembly by a vote of 50-10. The bill was sponsored by assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, who says that these types of legal defenses make violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people appear to garner a less severe punishment.



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Posted by on Sep 29, 2014. Filed under Around the Nation, Online Only, Top Highlights. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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