Wisconsin crime victims recently got a huge victory thanks in part to Monroe County legislators − state Sens. Patrick Testin, Jennifer Shilling and Howard Marklein and Reps. Loren Oldenburg, Nancy VanderMeer and Tony Kurtz. In May, the Wisconsin Senate and Assembly voted overwhelmingly in support of a bipartisan victims’ rights constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin, sending it before Wisconsin voters in a statewide ballot in April of next year.

As sheriff and district attorney for Monroe County, we have seen firsthand the heartbreaking impact crime has on innocent victims, from the moment that crime is committed through the prosecution of the case. From two sides of the legal system, we have seen too many good people become the victims of crime through no fault of their own, and so many of their lives are changed forever. If surviving the crime isn’t tough enough, victims then have to navigate a criminal justice process that can sometimes make them feel like they are the ones who are on trial.

This is one of the reasons that we are proud to declare our strong support for Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin. We believe that it will help victims get justice, encourage more survivors to come forward, help hold criminals accountable, and make all of our communities safer.

This bipartisan proposal is made up of common-sense provisions to ensure that victims of crime are empowered throughout the legal process − common-sense provisions that would not only dramatically improve the lives of victims, but would help keep all of the members of our communities informed and safe.

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We would like to express our sincere thanks to area legislators Testin, Shilling, Marklein, Oldenburg, VanderMeer and Kurtz for supporting Marsy’s Law. Monroe County is grateful to them and all of our lawmakers for coming together to clear this final legislative hurdle and move Wisconsin closer to making equal rights for crime victims a reality.

Now it is time for Wisconsin’s voters to have the final say on Marsy’s Law for Wisconsin. We look forward to voting to support equal rights for crime victims and urge our fellow Monroe County residents to do the same.

Monroe County Sheriff Wes Revels

Monroe County District Attorney Kevin Croninger

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Tomah Journal editor

Steve Rundio is editor of the Tomah Journal. Contact him at 608-374-7785.

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