Yingling Works to Eliminate Statute of Limitations for Victims of Sexual Abuse

GRAYSLAKE, Ill. –Prosecutors will have more time to go after criminals who sexually abuse children under new legislative proposals sponsored by state Rep. Sam Yingling, D-Grayslake. The package of bills is backed by Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

“It is reprehensible that people who prey on children can skirt possible arrest or prosecution,” Yingling said. “Oftentimes, victims of child sexual abuse do not come forward until long into their adult years and by then, they are unable to seek the justice they deserve because of the arbitrary statute of limitations. This measure will do away with that time limit and is another way we can strengthen law enforcement’s ability to go after criminals.”

Yingling is the sponsor of House Bill 1128. The measure removes the statute of limitations for sexual crimes such as involuntary sexual servitude of a minor under the age of 18, trafficking in persons, indecent solicitation of a child, sexual exploitation of a child, sexual misconduct with a person with a disability, and promoting juvenile prostitution.

Under existing law, most survivors of child sexual abuse only have 20 years after a crime was committed for prosecution against the abuser to begin. In some cases, prosecution of sex crime cases must occur within just three years of the offense. The Lake County lawmaker is also sponsoring House Bills 1127 and 1128, which eliminate the statutes of limitation for other sex crimes, such as criminal sexual assault and child pornography.

“When a prosecutor cannot indict an offender for horrific sexual assault crimes against children because of a random deadline, we put more children at risk,” Attorney General Lisa Madigan said. “I urge the Legislature to eliminate the statute of limitations on all sex crimes involving children.”

All three bills passed the Illinois House on Wednesday and await action in the Senate. Yingling represents the 62nd District, which contains portions of Gages Lake, Grayslake, Gurnee, Hainesville, the Round Lake communities, Wauconda and Wildwood.

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