Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Protecting Victims’ Rights

Today the Senate took final action to enact H.4364 An Act relative to preservation of evidence for victims of rape and sexual assault, which, if signed into law, would ensure that evidence collected in cases of rape and sexual assault is retained for the entire period in which such crimes can be prosecuted. Under present law, victims must renew their requests to preserve such evidence every 6 months. The bill was originally filed by Representative Tricia Farley-Bouvier (D-Pittsfield). When it came to the Senate I worked with Senators Michael Moore (D-Millbury) and Cynthia Creem (D-Newton) and Senate President Stan Rosenberg (D-Amherst) to strengthen it.

Working together, we added two important amendments to the final bill. One requires that all currently held evidence be retained, and the second directs that a study be conducted to develop a plan to house all of the evidence in a central state facility.
You can read the text of the bill here: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/189/House/H4364