Story by: Will Kriss

LANSING, MI (WKZO AM/FM) — Governor Whitmer has signed new legislation into law that is meant to help better protect victims of domestic violence.

As written, Senate Bill 257 will require deferred domestic violence charges to count as prior convictions in any subsequent cases.

“Domestic violence is an epidemic that affects thousands of people across Michigan every day,” Whitmer said in an official press release. “We have a duty to listen and respond to the needs of all Michiganders. That is why I am proud to sign this bill which helps protect victims of domestic violence and moves us a step closer to ending domestic violence in our state.”

In addition to allowing deferred domestic violence charges to count as prior convictions in following cases, this bill also allows the courts to order certain domestic violence offenders to participate in treatment court programs.

The bill is sponsored by Senator Stephanie Chang, D-Detroit.

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