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Proposal in Ohio would shield contact info of victims, witnesses

Posted at 9:57 AM, May 31, 2019

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A proposal in the Ohio budget would shield the telephone numbers of crime victims, witnesses to crimes and people involved in vehicle crashes.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien says the aim of the legislation is to prevent witness harassment as opposed to concerns about lawyers and others soliciting accident victims.

O'Brien told Gongwer News Service he's also contended with private investigators contacting people involved in cases and purporting to work for his office.

John Van Doorn of the attorney group Ohio Association for Justice deemed proposed initial fines of $5,000 and subsequent fines of $25,000 "awfully excessive."

Chiropractors expressed concerns about a similar legislative effort in the previous General Assembly.

The proposal is now before the Senate.