EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. – Seeking to create a uniform system for tracking evidence and coordinating law enforcement in sexual assault cases, a bill supported by state Rep. LaToya Greenwood, D-East St. Louis, which would create a state commission to review the issue was recently signed into law.
“We need to make every effort to put sex offenders behind bars, and this commission is an important step in ensuring our prosecutors have the evidence they need,” Greenwood said. “Sexual assault cases are often underreported, which is why we need a process in place that gathers evidence responsibly and treats survivors of assault with the respect they deserve.”
Greenwood backed the bipartisan House Bill 528, which creates the Sexual Assault Evidence Tracking and Reporting Commission to research and develop a statewide plan to track and review sexual assault evidence information. The commission will be made up of appointees from sexual assault organizations, law enforcement, state’s attorneys and other relevant individuals. The group will be tasked with submitting a report within a year that provides suggestions on a uniform, statewide reporting system that responsibly tracks cases and takes into account the well-being of survivors.
“This measure will make the evidence tracking process of sexual assault more transparent and effective,” Greenwood said. “It should foster better cooperation and communication between law enforcement agencies, and help ensure that survivors receive the justice they are owed.”