ROCKBRIDGE, VA – Delegate Ben Cline (R-Rockbridge) today announced that his bill to protect victims of domestic violence by requiring offenders to complete domestic violence education and treatment programs as part of the first offender program passed the House of Delegates.
“As an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney, I fought to prosecute domestic abusers and to encourage counseling for those who would benefit from it,” said Cline. “I am pleased that my bill to further protect domestic violence victims has passed the House of Delegates, and I look forward to its continued success as it makes its way through the General Assembly and to the Governor’s desk.”
HB 1334 requires a court to order a person placed on first offender status for assault and battery against a family or household member (i) be placed with a local community-based probation services agency and complete all education and treatment programs required by the agency or (ii) complete any education or treatment program that the court determines is best suited to the needs of the person. Under current law, the court may order that the person complete such education or treatment programs, but is not required to do so.
Cline represents the 24th House District, including the Cities of Lexington and Buena Vista, Bath County, Rockbridge County, and parts of Amherst and Augusta Counties. He was elected in 2002, and re-elected to his eighth term in November 2015. Cline is a member of the House Commerce and Labor Committee, the Militia, Police, and Public Safety Committee, the Finance Committee, and the Courts of Justice Committee. He is House Co-Chairman of the Conservative Caucus.