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Schwarzenegger to sign Chelsea's Law, named for slain teenager

September 9, 2010 |  8:25 am

Chelsea-king Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger this morning is set to sign Chelsea's Law, a bill named for a slain San Diego County teenager, which calls for tougher sentences and parole conditions for sex offenders.

Sponsored by Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher (R-La Jolla), the new law, AB 1844, was inspired by the rape and murder of Chelsea King, 17, an honor student at Poway High School. She was abducted and killed Feb. 25 while jogging near Lake Hodges in northern San Diego County.

John Albert Gardner, 31, a convicted sex offender, pleaded guilty in May to murdering King and 14-year-old Amber Dubois a year earlier. Gardner had been convicted in 2000 of molesting a 13-year-old girl and served three years in prison. He is now serving a life sentence without possibility of parole.

The bill, among other provisions, calls for life sentences for sex criminals who attack children under age 14. The signing is set for a ceremony in Balboa Park attended by Chelsea's parents, Brent and Kelly King.

This afternoon, skywriter Greg Stinis of San Diego Worldwide Sky Advertising is set to put a message in the sky above Poway in honor of Chelsea King. Provided by an anonymous donor, the skywriting was arranged by San Diego Padres announcer Mark Grant.

--Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Chelsea King.  Credit: The King family