Tennessee Senate Passes ‘Amelia's Law'

Posted at 9:55 PM, Mar 06, 2014
and last updated 2015-09-07 14:51:29-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A family from East Tennessee is feeling a sense of relief after the Tennessee Senate passed Amelia's Law.

The law passed Thursday is named 16-year-old Amelia Keown, who was killed by a driver high on drugs at the time of the crash.

Amelia's law lets judges place trans-dermal monitoring devices on persons on probation or parole who have a history with drug or alcohol abuse. The man who killed Amelia had a nine page Tennessee criminal history with numerous felonies.

"Had this law been in effect in august 2012 or even before that Amelia would still be with us," said Wayne Keown.

Keown was killed back in 2012 in a head on crash on Highway 411 near Maryville, Tennessee. There's a cross to remember the honor roll student who was on the dance team.

Amelia was just going home to get her pom poms for dance practice when she was killed.

"The last 19 months since it happened has been like a waking nightmare trying to just get through your life," said Amanda Moore.

Amelia's mother, grandfather and stepfather were special guests on the Senate floor. State Senators passed a law the family has been pushing since last year.

"The man that killed her, he died too. Nothing can happen to him and it won't bring her back, but it does give us some sense of justice," said Moore. "It's very bitter sweet. I'm very proud of what we've been able to accomplish, but at the same time it's really hard to reason why we're here."

Amelia's Law passed easily 29 votes to zero. Amelia's Law still has to pass in the Tennessee House. It would take affect July 1.