SANTA FE, NM (KRQE) - A bill that would toughen the penalties for child killers was passed by the senate over the weekend.
The bill would make people who kill a child eligible for the state's highest sentence - life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Senator Mary Jane Garcia has been working to get a bill like this passed since the death of Baby Briana Lopez in 2002; she was raped, beaten and killed by her family when she was just 5 months old. Tomorrow would be Briana's 10th birthday.
To honor her, members of the community are holding a toy drive in Brianna's name where some of the toys will be placed at her grave. The rest will be donated to the child crisis center of southern New Mexico.
The bill passed the senate overwhelmingly and now heads to the house. The only senators to vote against it were Michael Sanchez, and Gerald Ortiz y Pino.
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