Advocates push for movement in “Brittany’s Law”

12 year-old Brittany Passalacqua was murdered in Geneva back 2009 along with her mother, Helen Buchel.

GENEVA, N.Y. (WIVB)- 12 year-old Brittany Passalacqua was murdered in Geneva back 2009 along with her mother, Helen Buchel.

Their killer was Buchel’s boyfriend, who had served prison time for assaulting his infant daughter.

He was on parole when he murdered Brittany and Helen.

“Had Helen known about this guy, she would have said ‘No I’m not going to date you,” said Kevin Retzer, who is working with Helen’s mother to promote “Brittany’s Law.”

The measure would create a registry for domestic abusers, in hopes others will be alerted to danger and avoid tragedy.

Retzer was instrumental in getting “JJ’s Law” passed in 2013; it’s named after Retzer’s great nephew. “JJ’s Law” ups the look-back window to ten years for child abusers.

JJ suffered brain damage when he was shaken as a child by his father. An offender registry was always something Retzer wanted to accomplish, but it didn’t make it into the law.

Retzer thinks if “Brittany’s Law” would have been in place then, his nephew could have been spared serious injuries.

“He was injured as an infant and throughout the course of the events, finding out how he got injured, who the abuser was, we had found out the abuser had injured another child of his four years previous to JJ, and identical injury, a break to the upper arm,” Retzer explained.

He’s leading a group of advocates to Albany to lobby for “Brittany’s Law” finally getting passed.

Like the current sex offender registry, Retzer doesn’t believe everyone will look on it.

“Some will, some wont,” he told us. But having it there he feels, sends a strong message to potential abusers.

Retzer and a group of “Brittany’s Law” supporters, including Buchel’s mother, are expecting a meeting with lawmakers in Albany soon.

The bill remains stuck in the Corrections Committee in the Assembly.

News 4 will continue to keep tabs on the bill’s progress.

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