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'Ashanti Alert' bill passes Senate, heading to governor's desk

Named after Ashanti Billie, the legislation would create an alert system to help locate missing adults who may have been abducted and in danger.
Ashanti Billie

RICHMOND, Va. (WVEC) -- The "Virginia Critically Missing Adult Alert Program" is on its way to be signed into law.

Also known as an "Ashanti Alert," the bill unanimously passed the Virginia Senate on Thursday, according to an aide of Delegate Jay Jones (D-89th District). Jones co-sponsored the bill in the House of Delegates, where it has already passed.

An Ashanti Alert would allow for "local, regional, or statewide notification of a critically missing adult, defined as an adult whose whereabouts are unknown, who is believed to have been abducted, and whose disappearance poses a credible threat to his health and safety."

The alert is named after Ashanti Billie who was abducted from Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek (Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story) and found murdered in Charlotte, North Carolina last year.

Navy veteran Eric Brown is charged in connection to the kidnapping and killing.

Billie's parents are pushing for federal legislation which would create a similar alert system.

Having passed both chambers of the General Assembly, the bill will now head to Governor Ralph Northam's desk, where he is expected to sign it into law.

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