It's a proposed bill that would make it illegal to kill an unborn baby in Colorado.
And it has the support of both sides of the abortion debate in the state.
It comes after a hit-and-run crash in Stapleton last December that badly injured Laurie Gorham and killed her nearly full-term baby.
7NEWS discovered it's the wording that's the key to this bill.
This law makes it a crime to terminate a pregnancy through reckless actions; the law does not include women and doctors who terminate pregnancies intentionally.
Under current law, even though Gorham lost her unborn child, the person responsible wouldn't face homicide charges for killing her unborn child.
"There's a definite void in our statutes," said Sen. Betty Boyd, D-Lakewood.
That's because Colorado law doesn't recognize fetal homicide as a crime.
"It's an absolute travesty that you can commit a crime in this state against an unborn child and not be held accountable," said House Assistant Majority Leader Mark Waller, R-Colorado Springs.
House Bill 1256 aims to change that, making it a crime to cause a woman to lose her unborn child. The law would also include degrees of severity based on the nature of the crime. The bill also maintains abortion rights and has many exclusions.
"There's a non-negotiable part of the bill that states the fetus is not given the status of 'personhood,'" said Boyd.
"I've made it very clear, this is not an abortion issue," said Waller, the house sponsor of the bill.
"We've done this in a way that completely avoids the debate around reproductive health care services," said Sen. Pat Steadman, D-Denver. "It's not about the abortion debate. This is about closing a gap in our criminal code. Right now, we really don't have the right tools available for a prosecutor to charge someone."
Some question remain about what constitutes a crime. In an informal debate at the state capitol building Monday, one lawmaker used the example of a person failing to shovel the sidewalk after a snow storm. The lawmaker said, "If a pregnant woman slips and falls and the child dies, is that a crime?"
Sponsors of the bill said that kind of thing doesn't qualify, just as the law doesn't include abortion.
"I wouldn't be a part of it if that were true," said Steadman.
"It's a problem that we need to find a solution for," said Boyd.
"I'm trying to criminalize an act against unborn children," said Waller.
The law could have some monetary costs. For example, the overcrowded prison system could have to find room for more prisoners.
Waller said each prison bed costs the state of Colorado about $100,000 a year to maintain when all expenses related to guards and feeding and housing prisoners are factored in.
That could be the one thing that derails the bill.
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