NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — Tennessee state lawmakers have advanced a bill that increases the penalties against parents or guardians who fail to report a child missing in a timely manner.
House Bill 1309 was approved Wednesday by the Tennessee House Criminal Justice Subcommittee.
The legislation requires parents and guardians to report a missing child to law enforcement within 48 hours of their disappearance. Failure to do so would be a misdemeanor punishable by up to a 11 months and 29 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500.
The proposal has been named “Evelyn’s Law” in honor of Sullivan County toddler Evelyn Boswell. Evelyn was reported missing in February but authorities said she hadn’t been seen since December. Investigators discovered the toddler’s body on March 6 at a family member’s property.
Evelyn’s Law is sponsored by Reps. Timothy Hill (R-Blountville), John Crawford (R-Kingsport), and Bud Hulsey (R-Kingsport).
The bill now moves to the House Judiciary Committee which is scheduled to discuss the proposal on June 2.
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the death of Evelyn Boswell.