Lawmakers OK separate courtroom seating for crime victims
BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers have given final passage to a proposal that would let crime victims, crime witnesses or their family members seek courtroom seating separate from defendants, defendants' family members or defense witnesses.
The bill by Sen. J.P. Morell, a New Orleans Democrat, was sent to the governor's desk with an 86-0 House vote Wednesday. Morrell has described his proposal as helping to protect victims of domestic violence, who often testify against their abusers.
Others questioned whether lawmakers need to tell judges how to seat people in their courtrooms.