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Kentucky lawmakers move on bill to strengthen 'Casey's Law'

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A bill that strengthens Casey’s Law moved out of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee Wednesday morning. Karyn Czar reports from Frankfort.

Casey’s Law passed in 2004 after the death of Casey Wethington, a 23-year-old Kentucky man who died of a heroin overdose. It allows families to get a court order for involuntary treatment for loved ones suffering from alcohol or drug abuse. HB 362 clarifies the beyond reasonable doubt standard and allows subpoenas of medical experts working directly with a patient.

Casey’s mother Charlotte Wethington testified that the initial law has already saved countless lives and asked lawmakers to add these provisions to potentially save more.

“We have never heard of anybody that has talked with us or written us that they have felt that their rights were violated. In fact they are extremely, and I can’t stress that enough, extremely grateful that someone did for them what they were not able to do for themselves because of the damage addiction had done to their brain.”

The measure passed out of committee unanimously.