Queensland

Sophie's Law: Sarah Milosevic pushes to have her daughter's death mean something

A mother who lost her unborn daughter when a drunk and speeding driver collided with her car has secured a meeting with the Attorney-General in her push for a law change.

Sarah Milosevic was 39 weeks pregnant, days from giving birth, when 33-year-old Rodney Leigh Shaw's car collided with Milosevic's car south of Brisbane on August 29, 2014.

Mrs Milosevic said she was critically injured, breaking her back in two places, several ribs and suffering internal bruising, while husband Peter broke his neck, pushing a piece of bone within millimetres of making him quadriplegic.

Worse still, baby Sophie lost her oxygen supply and died six days before she was due to see the world for the first time.

"(I think about Sophie) every day," Mrs Milosevic said.

"Especially when it comes to special things like we've just gone through Christmas and things like that.

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"I think about what the girls would be doing together and how they'd be playing and Jorja's being the big sister and all those family things.

"Like instead of celebrating Sophie's first birthday we had to hold a memorial."

In Beenleigh Magistrates Court on November 27, Shaw was fined just $950 for his crimes and had his licence suspended for five months.

"We were quite gutted I suppose, at the very least, that that's what he received," Mrs Milosevic said.

"It wasn't right and it didn't justify and hence this is our fight to give Sophie a voice.

"At least we can stop any other families suffering the same injustice."

The decision, based on one count of drunk driving and one count of speeding, couldn't take into account the death of little Sophie Milosevic.

Her 31-year-old mum said police were unable to pursue dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm charges because forensic evidence at the scene didn't prove how fast Mr Shaw was travelling.

The decision prompted her to kickstart a campaign for the Queensland government to introduce Sophie's Law, which would see any fetuses past 30 weeks gestation classed as human beings.

"All babies born past 20 weeks gestation need to have a birth certificate, a death certificate and also a funeral," she wrote in a change.org petition, which had already gathered almost 90,000 signatures on Wednesday afternoon.

"So why is it that only in a court of law, does a baby have no rights to be counted?"

The proposal was very similar to Zoe's Law, a New South Wales proposal put forward by Brodie Donegan, whose unborn daughter died in 2009 when she was hit by a drug driver while walking.

It comfortably passed the state's House of Representatives in 2013 but stalled in the upper house and eventually lapsed in 2014 amid a chorus of fears it would impact women's reproductive rights.

Opponents of the NSW proposal warned even if legislation was worded to exclude abortion and other concerns it would still be at risk of being changed further down the track.

Ms Milosevic, who will meet with Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath on February 4, stressed she didn't want her proposal to impact women's rights to abortion.

She said she had learned from campaigns such as Ms Donegan's and was pushing to place the cut-off at 30 weeks to hopefully avoid anti-abortion concerns.

"My sympathies to Ms Milosevic for her terrible loss," Ms D'Ath said in a statement.

"I am aware of the petition and I am willing to speak to her about this issue."

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