On September 28, 2016, on the heels of amending other sexual assault legislation on the books in California, the Golden State now allows rape and other sexual assault allegations to be brought at anytime during the life of the defendant.  The new law kicks in on Jan. 1, 2017 but applies retroactively if the statute of limitations has not yet run on. 

Previously there was a 10-year statute of limitations in place, but the new legislation puts sexual assault on par as murder and other crimes which carry the death penalty or life in prison.

The summary of the new legislation states:

Existing law allows prosecution of an offense punishable by death or by imprisonment for life or for life without the possibility of parole, or for the embezzlement of public money, to be commenced at any time. This bill would allow the prosecution of rape, sodomy, lewd or lascivious acts, continuous sexual abuse of a child, oral copulation, and sexual penetration, that are committed under certain circumstances, as specified, to be commenced at any time. The bill would apply to these crimes committed after January 1, 2017, and to crimes for which the statute of limitations that was in effect prior to January 1, 2017, has not run as of January 1, 2017.

The new legislation is inspiring similar changes in Colorado and other states. The effect of the new law is clear.  A complaining “victim” may levy sexual assault or rape charges against a person at anytime in their lifetime.  An ex-wife, ex-girlfriend or casual lover may decide even twenty or forty years later that a sexual encounter was was not “consensual”.

The purpose of the statute of limitations is to safeguard people from untimely allegations, especially when enough time has passed that witnesses are no longer around, memories may fade or physical or biological evidence is no longer reliable.

Men will no longer have the safeguard of common sense laws when it comes to defending against rape or sexual assault charges.  As witnessed in the Bill Cosby case which is taking place in Pennsylvania, Cosby is being charged with sex crimes that were allegedly committed over forty years ago.

The bottom line is that if you life in California or another state which is passing drastic sexual assault laws (targeting Men), you are not safe from casual sexual encounters, especially those that involve drinking.  A person can change her mind at anytime, even during the act of sex and claim that it is no longer consensual.   This is what happened in Derrick Rose’s sexual assault case in which he was recently acquitted after almost a two year trial.  The victim had texted him saying she was “really horny” but still claimed that she was raped because she changed her mind the next day.

 

The full text of the legislation can be found here: http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160SB813

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