House Votes Through Bills On Fetal Homicide, Synthetic Drugs Ban

May 6, 2015

New Hampshire House has again voted to make fetal homicide a crime.

Lawmakers voted 193-159 on Wednesday to amend the Senate’s version, which applies the law to fetuses which have reached the stage of viability.  

The House changed that to fetuses that have passed eight weeks, but it excludes cases involving abortions or any other medical procedure.

Republican Leon Rideout of Lancaster, who sponsored the House version, says the bill gives justice to families who have lost a child in an assault or car accident.

“Thirty-eight other states have a fetal homicide law using virtually the same language, and have been using it successfully for over 40 years,” Rideout told his colleagues. 

The bill now heads back to the Senate where a committee will soon consider the House’s version.

Lawmakers also joined the state Senate to back a bill banning the sale and use of synthetic drugs. The Republican-backed House voted 233 to 120 to outlaw nearly 11 pages worth of synthetic chemicals.

Democrat Len DiSesa of Dover says drugs such as spices and synthetic marijuana can be lethal. “These drugs are being sold out in the open, right on the counter, at gas stations, convenience stores, tobacco and head shops and other retail stores and over the internet. They mimic stimulates such as cocaine, LSD, meth.”

But Republican John Burt of Goffstown told colleagues the law, which would allow sellers to be fined up to $1,000, does more harm than good. “Help the young people of our state, by not forcing the synthetic drug abuser underground where they will not receive any help.”

The bill passed the Senate unanimously in February, and Governor Maggie Hassan has said if it reaches her desk, she would likely sign it.