CHICAGO – State Rep. John D’Amico, D-Chicago, a father of three, is urging Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign legislation that would give prosecutors more time to prosecute child sex offenses.
“Survivors of sexual assault must face the repercussions of an attack for the rest of their lives,” D’Amico continued. “We should hold sex offenders accountable for the rest of theirs.”
The D’Amico-backed Senate Bill 189 removes the statute of limitations on various sex crimes against children including sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault and predatory criminal sexual assault. The measure would allow law enforcement to bring charges at any time when survivors come forward or evidence is discovered.
Survivors of rape and sexual abuse are often reluctant or unable to report the crime. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, nine out of 10 child sexual abuse survivors are abused by someone close to them, and may be hesitant to report them. Disclosure of sexual abuse is often delayed; children often avoid reporting the abuse because they are either afraid of a negative reaction from their parents or of being harmed by the abuser. This causes survivor to often delay disclosure until adulthood.
“The survivors of child sex crimes often take many years, if not decades, to process their trauma and develop the comfort required to press charges against their abuser,” said D’Amico. “Yet the governor has sat on this bill for two months and decided not to sign it. There should be no hesitation for the governor to sign this bill that would provide justice to kids into law.”