A bill just passed by Texas lawmakers is expected to close a loop hole in other protective order laws. It's called the Kristy Appleby Law, named after a San Antonio woman killed by her boyfriend's ex-wife in 2009. Kristy tried to get a protective order against the woman prior to her murder, but the law wouldn't allow it.
Appleby’s senseless death in 2009 proved there was a flaw in the Texas Protective Order Law. So San Antonio Senator, Carlos Uresti, worked to create Kristy’s bill back in 2009, just weeks after her death. It was signed into law by Governor Rick Perry on June 17th, 2011
In the past, to get a protective order, a person had to file it against someone who they had a relationship with. Now, with the Appleby Law in place, people can get one to ward off a spouse's ex, or even a threatening in-law.
Dallas County Assistant District Attorney Carla Bean hears of these cases all too often. She said she has had to turn away many cases in the past, but that's about to change.
"We'll have to change all of our paperwork and actually put the new message out because in the past those persons did not qualify because they did not have a family relationship," said Bean.
The new law went into effect immediately.
People threatened by a third party who were turned away in the past are urged by Bean to try for a protective order again.