Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Connecticut Eliminates Statute Of Limitations In Sex Assaults

Thanks in large part to the persistance of Donna Palomba whose rapist was identified through a DNA match after the Connecticut statute of limitations had expired, that same injustice won't happen for many other rape victims with DNA evidence but no suspect.

For rape victims like Donna who have already seen the statute of limitations expire, this change in the law won't make a difference in their cases since the law doesn't apply retroactively.

Donna's rapist was convicted of actions related to rape since the statute of limitations on kidnapping hadn't expired, but there is a clear difference between kidnapping and kidnapping as part of a sex crime. This difference is important not only for the appropriate length of sentence, but for risk assessment and for public safety.

Under the change, six of the most serious sexual assault crimes - first-degree sexual assault, aggravated first-degree sexual assault, sexual assault in a spousal or cohabiting relationship, second-degree sexual assault and third-degree sexual assault, with or without a firearm - may be prosecuted at any time, if the alleged perpetrator is identified through DNA evidence and the crime was reported within five years of the attack.
I'm sure many people will object to this change for various reasons, but it is a needed change.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 1:59 PM   0 comments links to this post

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