- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 8, 2016

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia students who are charged with crimes at school could point to learning and behavioral issues as a defense under a bill approved by the General Assembly.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports (bit.ly/1W4aHx3) that the Republican-controlled House voted 95-1 in support of the bill on Monday, sending it to Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

The measure would allow students to introduce records in a trial that show educational and behavioral issues as evidence of “diminished capacity.” It applies only to misdemeanor offenses during school activities.

Republican Del. David Albo said the bill could help a student with a disability such as autism from being overly punished for disruptive behavior, like throwing a trash can.

Republican Del R. Lee Ware Jr. said he believes the measure would set a bad legal precedent.

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