A would-be law dubbed “Gina’s Bill,” in remembrance of Radford University student Gina Hall, who was killed in 1980, has been introduced for consideration by the Virginia General Assembly.
State Senator Ben Chafin has introduced Bill #5103 for consideration by the state’s Rehab and Social Services Committee. The bill provides that any person convicted of murder when the location of the body of the victim is unknown and the state parole board has probable cause to believe that such person convicted has information concerning the location of the body is not eligible for parole.
Hall’s body has never been found. She was the victim in the first murder case in the state of Virginia in which a conviction was secured without a body, a confession and witnesses. At the time, only five other successful “no-body” convictions had ever taken place in the country.
Gina’s sister, Dlana Hall Bodmer, is encouraging people to support the measure.
“As I share my perspective from 40 years of experience as the family member of a victim of a “no-body conviction” case, I humbly request to consider all points as if that victim had been your own family member: a mom, a dad, a sister, a brother, a spouse, a child,” Bodmer said on a recent Facebook post.
“The reality is that the loss of a loved one to a violent crime is a traumatic life event,” she said. “And when it is a no-body-ever-found conviction, the heartbreaking reality is that the victim’s remains have been hidden in some unknown place.”
The man convicted of her murder was sentenced to life in prison but is eligible for parole. So far, all of his parole requests have been denied.
“Gina’s Bill,” according to Bodmer, focuses on those murderers who, without regret, dispose of a body in such a manner that it cannot be found.
“Passing ‘Gina’s Bill’ into law would send a positive message to Virginians that the rights of the victim and the victim’s families are relevant by acknowledging that we as a society see and understand the injustice of a murderer never disclosing the location of the victim’s remains,” Bodmer said.