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Supporters urge governor to sign law to prevent GPS stalking

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

A state bill, if signed into law, could protect more domestic violence victims from dying at the hands of their abusers. The bill was inspired by a local woman who was murdered in 2012.

"We have never been closer to carrying out her story and saving lives across New York State then we are here today," said State Senator Tim Kennedy of Buffalo, referring to Jackie Wisniewski . 

Wisniewski was murdered in a stairwell at ECMC in 2012, where she worked by her ex-boyfriend, Dr. Timothy Jorden.  

Months before her death Wisniewski discovered Jorden had installed a GPS tracking device on her car to stalk her. But the current law did not protect her. 

Wisniewski's brother David could not hold back his emotions and tears as he appeared in Niagara Square urging Cuomo to sign the law.

"At the chance of changing Jackie's story from one of sadness to one of pride, with a chance to save others," said Wisniewski.

Assembly woman Crystal Peoples-Stokes of Buffalo joined Kennedy and the Wisniewski family in Niagara Square urging Governor Cuomo to sign Jackie's Law.

"No one should be able to put a GPS system on your vehicle, your body, your person in your house, much like that can't put a camera in there -- they should not be able to put a GPS system as well," said Peoples-Stokes. 

Supporters were joined by Mary Travers Murphy, Executive Director of the Family Justice Center of Erie County. Murphy said she hears from victims every day claiming they are being stalked by GPS and other surveillance devices by abusers. 

Credit WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley
Mary Travers Murphy -- Executive Director of the Family Justice Center.

The Family Justice Center just received $50,000 grant with the help of Verizon to for its Tech-Check program. It alerts a victim if there's a GPS device in their vehicle. 

If the governor signs the bill into law, it would close a gap in GPS stalking to protect domestic violence victims.  

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