Daughter's death drives parents to push for tougher chaperoning laws - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Ben Watson

Daughter's death drives parents to push for tougher chaperoning laws

Phylicia Moore Phylicia Moore

Parents of a New Jersey girl who died on a mission trip say she was murdered, and Monday called for stricter laws covering chaperones and international travel.

Eighteen year old Phylicia Moore went to Ghana on a humanitarian mission last year.  Lola Moore, her mother, said 24 hours after her daughter arrived, she was found dead in a pool.

"It was definitely foul play," she said.

Moore said her daughter reportedly declined offers to go swimming, and left her friends to go to her hotel room.

"That's the last anyone claims...seems to have saw her," Moore said during a visit to Memphis Monday. "She was found 11 hours later at the bottom of the swimming pool."

Authorities in Ghana and the FBI are investigating Phylicia's death.  Meanwhile, the Moore family is pushing members of congress to adopt a bill they call "Phylicia's Law."  It would require school systems across the country to have chaperones with student at all times.

"What we now know there is no law that spells out specifically how chaperones are suppose to handle the protection and safety of students when they are on trips," Moore said.

So far, nearly 30 congressmen have signed on as co-sponsors for the bill.  If approved, Moore said, Phylicia's Law could prevent other families from going through the pain her family is going through.
"Its still very traumatic as we try to get answers, as we try to find out what happened to her, and to give her a voice in this whole experience," Moore said.

Family members have started a website where you can sign a petition in favor of Phylicia's Law.  To visit the site, click here.

(Note: An earlier version of this story said Phylicia Moore was from the Mid-South.  Moore actually lived in New Jersey.  Action News 5 interviewed Moore's mother Monday during her visit to Memphis.  WMCTV.com regrets this error.)

Click here to send an email to Ben Watson.
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