Stephens Votes to Eliminate the Statute of Limitations for Sex Crimes Against Children
6/21/2012
HARRISBURG -- Rep. Todd Stephens (R-Montgomery) has backed three bills passed by the House Judiciary Committee that would deliver justice to those who were sexually abused as children.

“We cannot allow sexual predators to avoid criminal punishment and civil liability by riding out the clock and hiding behind the statute of limitations,” Stephens said. “Our laws must give the victims of sexual assault, especially those who were minors when the crimes occurred, more time to bring charges against their assailant.”

Prior to joining the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Stephens was the head of the Sex Crimes Unit in the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office. “Children who are sexually abused often don’t come forward for many years due to fear, family pressures, or embarrassment. That unfortunate reality shouldn’t prevent their abusers from being held accountable,” explained Stephens.

House Bill 832 would eliminate the statue of limitations for people committing sex crimes against minors so prosecutors can bring charges regardless of when the crime was committed.

House Bill 878 would extend the statute of limitations for child victims of sex crimes to seek financial compensation through civil suits. Currently suits are barred when the victim turns 30. Under the proposed bill he time-period would be extended to permit a suit up until the victim turns 50.

House Bill 2488 combines both bills and ensures those who commit sex crimes against minor children are held accountable for their reprehensible acts through both criminal and civil means.

"These bills are critical in ensuring child victims of sex crimes receive the justice they deserve and that the offenders are held accountable for their actions," closed Stephens.

The bills move on to the whole House for a vote.

State Representative Todd Stephens
151st District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact:
David Foster
215-744-2600
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