Press release from State Rep. Jud McMillin
(Indianapolis, Ind.) - A technical bill to streamline habitual offender cases passed unanimously out of the Indiana House of Representatives on Monday. Senate Bill (SB) 31, Sponsored by State Representative Jud McMillin (R-Brookville) will now go to the governor’s desk to sign into law.
The bill requires that a prosecutor, indicting someone with a habitual offender charge, must submit the formal accusation 30 days prior to the initial hearing. If the charge is submitted in that 30 day window, the accusing party must then show reasonable justification for the delay in which the court must then grant a continuance or extension of the case – allowing adequate time for both parties to build their evidence.
“A prosecutor, attaching a habitual offender charge to someone with subsequent charges or past convictions, is a serious offense with a strict punishment, and this technical bill ensures a reasonable timeframe for all parties involved to gather information they deem necessary to present their case effectively,” said Rep. McMillin.
Currently, the law requires a habitual offender charge to be added to a case at least 10 days before the pretrial hearing. This change improves efficiency in Indiana’s court system and provides a more reasonable timeframe for the defense and prosecuting attorneys to build their case. Once signed by the governor, this law will go into effect July 1, 2013.
Visit www.in.gov/legislative for more information regarding SB 31.