Jennifer Magnano fled Connecticut and her estranged husband in 2007. When she returned for a custody hearing months later, her husband shot her to death and killed himself. With two of Magnano’s children looking on, Gov. M. Jodi Rell held a bill-signing ceremony that marked the passage of a law prompted by Magnano’s death, reports the Hartford Courant. The new law will allow state courts to conduct custody hearing by video conference. “It could have saved her life,” Rell said of the new law.
The law also includes a provision prompted by another death – a traffic accident that killed 20-year-old Michelle Saccoccio in June 2006. Enfield police notified Saccoccio’s mother that Michelle had been killed in a traffic accident out of town, but provided her with no other details. Ava Saccoccio-Hill said she struggled for days to learn more about her daughter’s death, including the whereabouts of her body. The confusion denied her a chance to view her daughter’s body the night of the accident, she said. The law establishes protocols for how police are to notify families of fatalities.