OLYMPIA, Wash. -- An anti-stalking bill that was inspired by the murder of an elementary school teacher was signed into law Friday.
Washington governor Jay Inslee signed the law surrounded by family members of victim Jennifer Paulson.
In 2010, the 30-year-old Tacoma teacher was shot and killed by a man who had been stalking her for years.
The new law creates a civil protection order for victims who don’t qualify for domestic violence or sexual assault protection orders.
It also expands categories of behavior that qualify as felony stalking and increases penalties for stalking.
“The House Bill 1383 is going to give that protection and shining red light and is going to give both our sheriffs and police officers and a message to stalkers a message that this is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” Inslee said.
Inslee signed the bill at the school where Paulson was killed.