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A bill authored by State Senator Mark Messmer has passed the Indiana House of Representatives.

Senate Bill 177 would allow the immediate family of a deceased individual to request a new investigation by the Indiana State Police into the cause of death of their relative.

The Indiana State Police would not be required to open a new investigation but would be obligated to review the request.

The legislation specifies that the families must meet reasonable suspicion standards by providing relevant facts.

Messmer authored the bill after meeting with the family of Kristy Kelley, a constituent of Senate District 48, who went missing and was found deceased weeks later in her car in a pond.

Local law enforcement ruled Kelley’s death an accident, but her family still had many questions.

The bill now returns to the Senate for further consideration.

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