COLUMBUS – State Representative Brian Lampton (R-Beavercreek) yesterday introduced House Bill 161, also known as Jacob’s Law, legislation that would create a registry of basic information on individuals who have been convicted of crimes against children.
Jacob’s Law was inspired by a young boy, Jacob Barker, who was killed in August 2015 by Justin Payne, a man who was previously convicted of endangering a child in 2011 after he fractured a baby’s skull and broke her ribs and ankles. Jacob’s birth mother was dating Payne at the time of her son’s death. Neither she, nor Jacob’s birth father, knew of Payne’s previous conviction.
“Jacob’s death is tragic and intolerable. House Bill 161 has the potential to protect children from ever getting abused by a convict with a history of harming children,” said Lampton. “It’s time to standup for those who cannot stand up for themselves. Creating this child abuse registry will protect Ohio’s children and give families the proper precautions to protect their loved ones.”
Jacob’s Law made movement in the 133rd General Assembly but did not become law. House Bill 161 is almost identical to Jacob’s Law from the previous GA (House Bill 302) with the slight adjustments that House Bill 161 adds persons convicted of “domestic violence against a minor” and “permitting child abuse” to the violent offender database, without the need for an appropriation within the bill.
Lampton has worked alongside the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services and the Ohio Attorney General’s Office while redrafting the legislation. The bill has been referred to the House Criminal Justice Committee for review.