Senate and House pass Sergeant Nick Risner Act

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WHNT) — Lawmakers in the Alabama Senate and House of Representatives passed an amended version of the Sgt. Nick Risner Act Thursday. The law would prevent anyone convicted of a crime that caused the death of another person from being ineligible for the state’s “good times” law.

The legislation is now moving to Governor Kay Ivey’s office.

The bill is named in honor of the late Sheffield police officer Nick Risner, who died last October after being shot in the line of duty. The man charged in Risner’s death, Brian Lansing Martin, had been released after serving three years of a 10-year sentence for manslaughter under Alabama’s “good times” law.

The Alabama Department of Corrections says the ‘good time’ Brian Lansing Martin earned in prison – for good behavior – led to his sentence being cut by two-thirds, from 10 years to just over 3 years from prison.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Phillip Pettus (R-Killen).

Current laws exclude several groups of people from the good times law, including:

  • Persons convicted of Class A crimes or those sentenced to terms of more than 15 years
  • Persons convicted of a sexual offense involving a child

The Alabama Sentencing Commission says most inmates serving time for manslaughter are already ineligible for quite a while.


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