Dietrich case inspires Ky. lawmaker to file juvenile court bill

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by Bryan Baker

WHAS11.com

Posted on January 16, 2013 at 12:47 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 16 at 1:02 AM

LOUISIVLLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Rep. Kevin Bratcher, a Kentucky lawmaker from Louisville, filed a bill to give juvenile victims of crimes more rights by allowing them to speak about any part of their case outside of the court room.

Cases involving juveniles in Kentucky remain confidential, but Rep. Bratcher described himself as "angry" with the way the court handled 17-year-old Savannah Dietrich's case last year, when a judge issued a gag order preventing anyone to speak about the case.

Dietrich was sexually abused after a night of underage drinking while she was unconscious in 2011. Two boys touched her and snapped nude pictures of her which were spread around.

Controversy erupted when Dietrich, who was unhappy with the boys' plea deal, used social media side Twitter to reveal the names of her attackers, who are minors and also are afforded confidentiality. Dietrich was slapped with a contempt charge that was later dropped.

Rep. Bratcher's bill applies to juvenile victims and not juvenile suspects. He says the bill has bipartisan support.

The boys' plea deal was later strengthened after another judge ordered the case records opened.
 

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