Illinois State House District 16 issued the following announcement on July 17.
A reform spearheaded by state Rep. Yehiel “Mark” Kalish, D-Chicago, that helps victims of sexual assault to come forward with confidence by prohibiting law enforcement from arresting survivors that report their abuse for an outstanding warrant for a low level crime was recently signed into law.
“Our number one priority should be standing with survivors of sexual assault,” Kalish said. “Survivors should feel comfortable reporting their abusers to law enforcement without fear of being arrested for a minor offense.”
Under current law, law enforcement must arrest survivors who have an outstanding warrant in their name, even if it is a low level offense. Instead of arrest, Kalish’s proposal, House Bill 92, would focus law enforcement’s efforts on addressing the sexual assault by simply issuing a notice to the survivor to appear in court for their previous offense. The measure clarifies to survivors of sexual assault that law enforcement prioritizes bringing sexual abusers to justice. Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed the legislation into law last week.
“We need to prioritize protecting survivors of sexual assault and bringing the perpetrators of such a heinous crime to justice,” Kalish said. “I would like to thank my colleagues in the legislature and the governor for their assistance in creating this law.”
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