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February 29, 2012 06:10 AM

Revised Definition Of Domestic Abuse Passes SD House

PIERRE, SD

The South Dakota House has approved a bill that would revise the state's legal definition of domestic abuse.

By revising the definition to include violence between family members or partners of the opposite sex in an intimate relationship, prosecutors can't press charges against college roommates who fight in their shared living space, lawmakers say.

Sen. Peggy Gibson says the revision must specify who's involved in domestic abuse so that the state's shelters can apply for federal funding.

Rep. Mark Venner passed an amendment that specifies the intimate violence involves a man and a woman, despite opposition from those who say it's unfair to exclude the gay and lesbian community.

The House voted 46-22, sending it back to the Senate to approve the change.

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