SCS/SB 812 - This act establishes the "Sexual Assault Survivors' Bill of Rights".
SEXUAL ASSAULT SURVIVOR RIGHTS (SECTION 595.201.2)
Under this act, certain rights are provided for survivors of sexual assault during any forensic examination and during any interview by a law enforcement official, prosecuting attorney, or defense attorney. The following rights are afforded to survivors of sexual assault crimes:
• Survivors have the right to consult with an employee or volunteer of a rape crisis center during any forensic examination and also have a support person with them;
• Survivors have the right to consult with an employee or volunteer of a rape crisis center during any interview with a law enforcement official, prosecuting attorney, or defense attorney and also have a support person with them;
• Survivors shall not be charged for the forensic examination and evidentiary collection kits shall be purchased, subject to appropriation, by the Department of Public Safety;
• Medical providers must inform survivors of their rights before commencing a forensic examination;
• Law enforcement officers, prosecuting attorneys, or defense attorneys must inform survivors of their rights before commencing a medical evidentiary or physical examination;
• Law enforcement officers, prosecuting attorneys, or defense attorneys cannot discourage a survivor from receiving a medical evidentiary or physical examination;
• Survivors have the right to prompt analysis of sexual assault forensic evidence through a secure and confidential message in writing from the crime lab;
• A defendant has no standing to object to any failure to comply to provisions of this act by a survivor;
• Failure of a law enforcement agency to take possession of any sexual assault forensic evidence or to submit evidence within the proscribed time period does not preclude the law enforcement agency from later submitting the evidence;
• No sexual assault forensic evidence shall be used to prosecute a survivor for any misdemeanor crime, however, sexual assault forensic evidence shall be admissible in any criminal or civil proceeding against the defendant;
• Law enforcement officers and medical providers must provide survivors with a document developed by the Department of Public Safety that explains the rights of survivors under this act;
• A law enforcement officer, upon request from a survivor, must furnish within 14 days an unaltered copy of all law enforcement reports concerning the sexual assault at no cost to the survivor;
• A prosecuting attorney, upon request from a survivor, must provide timely notices of any pretrial or final dispositions of the case, location of the convicted defendant, and the convicted defendant's information on a sex offender registry, if any;
• Survivors have the right to be reasonably protected from the defendant and persons acting on behalf of the defendant in either a civil or criminal case relating to the sexual assault;
• Survivors have the right to be free from intimidation, harassment, and abuse;
• Survivors shall not be required to submit to a polygraph examination as a prerequisite to filing a pleading or participating in proceedings; and
• Survivors have the right to be heard through survivor impact statements at any proceeding where a right of the survivor is at issue.
MISSOURI RIGHTS OF VICTIMS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT TASK FORCE (SECTION 595.202)
This act creates the "Missouri Rights of Victims of Sexual Assault Task Force" to consist of membership as set forth in the act.
The task force shall make certain recommendations as provided in the act. The task force shall collect data regarding sexual assault reporting, arrest, prosecution rates, access to sexual assault victims services, and any other important data, as well as collect feedback from stakeholders, practitioners, and leadership throughout the state and local law enforcement, victim services, forensic science practitioners, and health care communities.
The task force shall submit a report on its findings no later than December 31, 2021. The task force shall expire on December 31, 2021.
This act is substantially similar to SS/SCS/SB 569 (2020).
MARY GRACE BRUNTRAGER