Greenwich Delegation supports bill improving sexual assault investigations

State Representatives Livvy Floren (R-149), Mike Bocchino (R-150), and Fred Camillo (R-151) are hoping new legislation passed Wednesday, May 13 by the House of Representatives will help improve the tragic experience of sexual assault victims.

The bill, H.B. 6498, improves the transfer of sexual assault evidence collection kits by establishing a mandated timeline for health care facilities, police departments and state agencies involved in sexual assault investigations. Under the legislation, police departments will have 10 days to gather the kit evidence from a health care facility and transfer it to the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, which oversees sexual assault evidence collection kits.

“The House’s unanimous approval of the bill is a small victory for victims of sexual assault and those seeking justice,” said Rep. Camillo.

“It is essential that victims of sexual assault have a functioning support network. The established timeline should eliminate issues with delayed investigations and give victims more peace of mind when being in these terrible situations,” said Rep. Floren.

“Victims of sexual assault have already endured enough, and there is no reason that the justice system should make this process harder. By creating a mandatory timeline, it makes the support network for them stronger while improving the process to create a more efficient path to justice,” said Rep. Bocchino.

The kits will still be permitted in court, even if the authorities fail to meet the time requirements.

After gaining support from Connecticut’s Office of the Victim’s Advocate, Division of Criminal Justice, the Police Chiefs Association and the Permanent Commission of the Status of Women, the measure, which also improves court proceedings, was approved unanimously and now heads to the state Senate.

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