632 51 LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

State senators approved two bills Thursday that honor the legacies of a Knox County couple that was brutally murdered seven years ago.

The families of Chris Newsom and Channon Christian worked with lawmakers to create the legislation aimed at making changes to the justice system.

The Chris Newsom Act would do away with the state's 13th juror rule, which requires a judge to validate a jury verdict by signing a document. They hope that would cut down on re-trials, like the ones both families had to endure.

The Senate approved that measure unanimously, along with an amended version of the Channon Christian Act. It would prevent evidence or allegations of previous behavior that could call into question the character of a victim, defendant, witness or third-party.

The House companion bills are set to be discussed by a subcommittee next Wednesday.

Read or Share this story: http://on.wbir.com/1bq5qwY