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Melanie's Law Gaining Momentum in Albany

Photo supplied by thel office of Assemblyman Brian Maher

Albany =- A bill named in honor of Dutchess County resident Melanie Chianese is gaining traction in a late session push in Albany as this year’s legislative session comes to a close.

Melanie’s Law is a bill the bill honors the life of Melanie Chianese, a young mother killed by her own mother’s ex-boyfriend, Paul Senecal, after Melanie was not included in her mother’s order of protection. Melanie’s infant son and her mother were issued orders of protection from the killer; however, Melanie was deemed ineligible due to her age, 29, at the time of death. Melanie’s Law closes the loophole to include persons related, “by consanguinity or affinity to parties who are or have been in, on the order of protection.”

The bill is supported by both Democrats and Republicans and this week area lawmakers held a press conference in Albany to gain support for the measure as the legislative session winds down. “It’s inspiring to see legislators from both sides of the aisle come together in support of a bill that could save so many lives,” said Assemblyman Karl Brabenec (R, Deerpark).

Assemblyman Brian Maher (R, Walden) also supports the bill. “Domestic violence doesn’t just impact one person; it affects an entire family. It then only makes sense to extend orders of protection from violent people to an entire household. Having provided an order of protection to Melanie Chianese could have helped save her life by keeping away her killer, the same man who was harassing her mother,” said Maher.

State Senator Michelle Hinchey (D, Saugerties) is the prime sponsor of the bill in the state Senate and the bill is co-sponsored by Senator Rob Rolison (R, Poughkepsie).

Melanie’s Law was first introduced in 2022 by former State Senator Sue Serino.

Source: Mid-Hudson News

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