State Issue 1 Endorsed


Staff Reports



Poll: Ohioans Overwhelmingly Support State Issue 1

Eighty-Six Percent of Women and 81 Percent of Men Support Issue 1

A new poll released shows State Issue 1, the victims’ rights constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law, enjoys overwhelming support from Ohio voters in all regions of the state.

The survey, commissioned by Marsy’s Law for Ohio, found 71 percent of likely voters support State Issue 1 when first asked their opinion on the state constitutional amendment. Voter support increases to an astounding 84 percent after respondents received additional basic information about the ballot measure.

Overall, 86 percent of women and 81 percent men surveyed say they plan to vote for State Issue 1. The measure also has broad bipartisan support with 81 percent of Democrats, 86 percent of Republicans and 85 percent of independents supporting the constitutional amendment.

“This poll mirrors the strong support State Issue 1 has received from victim advocates, elected officials and law enforcement leaders across Ohio,” said Trevor Vessels, Marsy’s Law for Ohio state director. “Most Ohioans believe ensuring crime victims receive fair and equal treatment throughout the justice process is not only a reasonable expectation, it should also be a constitutional right.”

The survey of 601 likely voters was conducted from August 20 to 26, 2017 by Palomar Survey Research. It has a +/- 4 percent margin of error. Respondents were contacted by live telephone operators. Forty percent of responses came from cell phones.

State Issue 1 also enjoys broad bipartisan support from more than 275 elected officials and law enforcement leaders, including Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.

If voters approve the proposal bringing equal rights to crime victims this fall, State Issue 1 would grant a series of constitutional protections to crime victims and their immediate families for the first time in Ohio’s history.

Under the amendment, crime victims would have the right to notification of all proceedings as well as be guaranteed the right to be heard at every step of the process. Victims would also have the right to have input on all plea deals for offenders as well as the right to restitution resulting from the financial impact of the crime.

The effort to place State Issue 1 in the state constitution comes after similar ballot issues were approved in California, Illinois, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota and Montana.

The Marsy’s Law movement began in 1983, when a young woman named Marsy Nicholas was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend. Only a week after her murder, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they saw the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, had no idea the accused murderer had been released on bail.

Victim of Violent Crime Shares

Her Heartbreaking Story in New Issue 1 Ad

COLUMBUS – The Yes on State Issue 1 campaign took to the airwaves with its second major television advertisement asking Ohio voters to support the Ohio crime victim bill of rights known as Marsy’s Law.

The spot emphasizes how crime victims sometimes have their privacy rights violated by spotlighting the case of Ronda Blankenship, an Akron crime victim whose family was murdered on New Year’s Eve 2013. During the subsequent trials of the killers, Blankenship was forced to turn over her personal diary, social media passwords and medical records despite a lack of relevance to the defense’s case.

“State Issue 1 will offer greater protections to crime victims by ensuring they have their day in court with a full hearing before a judge before they are forced to turn over private information,” said Trevor Vessels, state director for Yes on State Issue 1. “Ronda’s case serves as a wake-up call to the abuses taking place in the system right now.”

If voters approve the proposal this fall, State Issue 1 would grant a series of constitutional protections to crime victims and their immediate families for the first time in Ohio’s history.

Under the amendment, crime victims would have the right to notification of all proceedings as well as be guaranteed the right to be heard at every step of the process. Victims would also have the right to have input on all plea deals for offenders as well as the right to restitution resulting from the financial impact of the crime. A crime victim who feels their rights are being violated could go before a judge to ask that their rights be protected.

State Issue 1 is supported by a broad bipartisan coalition of more than 315 elected officials and law enforcement leaders across Ohio, including Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.

The effort to place State Issue 1 in the state constitution comes after similar ballot issues were approved in California, Illinois, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota.

The Marsy’s Law movement began in 1983, when a young woman named Marsy Nicholas was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend. Only a week after her murder, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they saw the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, had no idea the accused murderer had been released on bail.

Ohio Law Enforcement Officials Unite Behind State Issue 1

Columbus – Dozens of sheriffs, police chiefs and county prosecutors across Ohio have endorsed State Issue 1, the equal rights for crime victims constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law.

The law-enforcement officials supporting State Issue 1 are part of a growing bipartisan coalition of more than 250 elected officials, faith leaders, community groups and victim rights advocates from every corner of the state.

“We appreciate the overwhelming support law enforcement has shown for State Issue 1,” said Trevor Vessels, Marsy’s Law for Ohio state director. “These brave men and women protect the lives and rights of crime victims everyday on our streets and in our courtrooms. Their recognition that crime victims deserve equal rights makes a powerful statement.”

Led by 20 county sheriffs and endorsed by the statewide Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association, a total of 52 law-enforcement officials support State Issue 1.

If voters approve the proposal bringing equal rights to crime victims this fall, State Issue 1 would grant a series of constitutional protections to crime victims and their immediate families for the first time in Ohio’s history.

Under the amendment, crime victims would have the right to notification of all proceedings as well as be guaranteed the right to be heard at every step of the process. Victims would also have the right to have input on all plea deals for offenders as well as the right to restitution resulting from the financial impact of the crime.

The effort to place State Issue 1 in the state constitution comes after similar ballot issues were approved in California, Illinois, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota and Montana.

The Marsy’s Law movement began in 1983, when a young woman named Marsy Nicholas was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend. Only a week after her murder, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they saw the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, had no idea the accused murderer had been released on bail.

Ohio law-enforcement officials endorsing State Issue 1 include:

  • 20 Ohio Sheriffs
  • Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association
  • Allen County Matt Treglia
  • Athens County Rodney Smith
  • Belmont County David Lucas
  • Brown County Gordon Ellis
  • Clark County Deborah Burchette
  • Delaware County Russell Martin
  • Franklin County Dallas Baldwin
  • Jackson County Tedd Frazier
  • Lake County Daniel Dunlap
  • Licking County Randy Throp
  • Meigs County Keith Wood
  • Mercer County Jeff Gray
  • Miami County David Duchak
  • Muskingum Matt Lutz
  • Ottawa County Stephen Levorchick
  • Paulding County Jason Landers
  • Putnam County Brian Sieker
  • Sandusky County Christopher Hilton
  • Summit County Steve Barry
  • Washington County Larry Mincks
  • 15 Local Police Chiefs
  • Anna Chief Scott Evans
  • Antwerp Chief George Clemens
  • Akron Chief James Nice
  • Barberton Chief Vince Morber
  • Botkins Chief Wayne Glass
  • Circleville Chief Shawn Baer
  • Fort Jennings Chief Michael Schleeter
  • Fremont Chief Dean Bliss
  • Jackson Center Chief Charles Wirick
  • Johnstown Chief Don Corbin
  • Marion Chief Bill Collins
  • Newark Chief Barry Connell
  • Perry Township Chief John Petrozzi
  • Pomeroy Chief Mark Proffitt
  • Reynoldsburg Chief Jim O’Neil
  • Nine County Prosecutors
  • Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn
  • Brown County Prosecutor Zac Corbin
  • Darke County Prosecutor Kelly Ormsby
  • Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien
  • Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters
  • Jackson County Prosecutor Justin Lovett
  • Licking County Prosecutor Bill Hayes
  • Meigs County Prosecutor James Stanley
  • Putnam County Prosecutor Gary Lammers
  • Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh
  • Eight other law-enforcement officials:
  • New Albany Law Director Mitch Banchefsky
  • New Albany Police Department Sgt. Garrett Fernandez
  • Paulding County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Jonathan Dyson
  • Paulding County Lt. Sheriff Brian Hanenkratt
  • Sandusky County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Edward Hastings
  • Wapakoneta Safety Service Director Chad Scott

Crime Victims’ Rights Amendment Earns Support of Ohio’s Top Cop

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine will serve as a co-chair for Yes on State Issue 1, the victims rights constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law, the campaign announced.

Appearing at a Statehouse news conference, Attorney General DeWine announced his support for State Issue 1, and urged voters to adopt the constitutional amendment this November.

“Supporting victims of crime is something that we all can agree on, because it is about doing the right thing for our fellow citizens who have been victims of crime,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. “I’m pleased to add my name to those supporting Issue 1 and urge Ohioans to vote yes on Issue 1.”

State Issue 1 is also supported by dozens of law-enforcement officials from every corner of the Buckeye State. Among the more than 275 elected officials supporting the Ohio crime victims’ bill of rights are 20 county sheriffs, 15 police chiefs, and nine county prosecutors.

“We are proud to have the support of Attorney General DeWine, a true champion for crime victims throughout his career,” said Cathy Harper Lee, executive director of the Ohio Crime Victims Justice Center and coalition director for the Yes on State Issue 1 campaign. “Mike DeWine sees everyday the impact that crime has on Ohioans, and knows that the time has come to put equal enforceable rights for crime victims in Ohio’s Constitution.”

If voters approve the proposal this fall, State Issue 1 would grant a series of constitutional protections to crime victims and their immediate families for the first time in Ohio’s history.

Under the amendment, crime victims would have the right to notification of all proceedings as well as be guaranteed the right to be heard at every step of the process. Victims would also have the right to have input on all plea deals for offenders as well as the right to restitution resulting from the financial impact of the crime.

The effort to place State Issue 1 in the state constitution comes after similar ballot issues were approved in California, Illinois, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota and Montana.

The Marsy’s Law movement began in 1983, when a young woman named Marsy Nicholas was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend. Only a week after her murder, Marsy’s mother and brother, Henry T. Nicholas, walked into a grocery store where they saw the accused murderer. The family, who had just come from a visit to Marsy’s grave, had no idea the accused murderer had been released on bail.

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Staff Reports