New Hampshire’s Governor Backs Bill Strengthening Rape Shield Law

Lizzi Marriott

Gov. Chris Sununu is voicing his support for legislation to strengthen New Hampshire's rape shield law amid concerns that House lawmakers may try to water it down.

The legislation stems from the case of Seth Mazzaglia, who was convicted of murdering University of New Hampshire student Elizabeth "Lizzi" Marriott, of Westborough, Massachusetts, in 2012. Mazzaglia's lawyers wanted to introduce evidence about Marriott's sexual past during the appeals process, a move the state Supreme Court eventually rejected.

The Marriott family is backing the legislation, which would keep a victim's sexual past from being offered as evidence at any stage of court proceedings.

A House committee votes Tuesday on the bill. The same committee rejected language defining what counts as "sexual activity" from a similar bill earlier this year.

Sununu supports the bill as written.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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