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Gov. Ducey signs bill charging adults who tell minors to take their own life

(Twitter photo/@dougducey)

PHOENIX — Adults can now be charged with manslaughter for advising or encouraging minors to take their own life.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed a bill Wednesday making that a new law in the state.

“I’m hopeful it’ll help to protect Arizonans who fall victim to horrible people and send a message to predators that this will not be tolerated,” Ducey said moments before signing HB 2459 into law.

Joining him for the signing was Paolla Jordan. Her 17-year-old son, Adrio, died by suicide in 2019 after someone he met online encouraged and even instructed him on how to take his own life.

When Jordan tried to get law enforcement involved, she was told there was nothing authorities could do. They explained there was no law on the books that prohibits adults to encourage or instruct minors to die by suicide.

“What happened to her son is a tragedy,” Ducey said. “I’m eager to sign this bill in memory of him so this never happens again.”

At the bill signing ceremony, Jordan thanked Rep. Jeff Weninger, R-Chandler, for introducing HB 2459 and Ducey for getting it across the finish line.

“I don’t want another family to go through what we’ve gone through,” she said.

Jordan is now looking to make this a federal law by passing a similar bill in Congress.

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