Penalties For Failing To Report Dead Bodies To Be Reexamined

An Indiana legislative council is scheduled to examine whether it is necessary to establish harsher penalties for those who don’t report finding a dead body.

Statehouse

Photo: Noah Coffey (Flickr)

The legislative committee plans to meet soon to discuss harsher penalties.

Bedford Senator Brent Steele said the committee’s action to consider harsher penalties for failing to report a dead body was prompted by public outcry over the Casey Anthony decision.

In July, Anthony was acquitted of her daughter’s murder in Florida, which does not have a law penalizing the failure to report a dead body.

Indiana already has law in place that makes it a misdemeanor if a person finds a dead body and does not report it to the authorities within three hours. The penalties include up to one year in prison.

In a statement, Steele said it is the job of lawmakers to address the concerns of their constituents, and he said the committee would examine whether making the crime a felony is necessary.

Indianapolis Representative Ed DeLaney, who sits on the committee, said he does not think the issue is worth the committee’s time.

“I think it’s one of the biggest problems we have in the legislature is that we pass bills that are designed to deal with very specific problems that rarely occur,” DeLaney said.

DeLaney said he thinks the current law is sufficient.

 

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