VanPelt SB 2609 040714Thanks to the eloquent leadership of co-sponsor State Senator Patricia Van Pelt and her colleagues, the Senate passed a measure extending the timeframe for rape prosecution.

“Today’s passage of this pivotal legislation is a sterling example of justice taking its rightful place at the forefront of the legislative process,” said Senator Van Pelt.

Senate Bill 2609 provides that the statute of limitations for sexual assault cases does not begin until state police analyze the rape kit.

The legislation was proposed in response to a years-long backlog in testing rape kits that led to some rape cases going unprosecuted because of the statute of limitations. Sen. Van Pelt raised the issue that Rosa Pickett has experienced this unfortunate reality.  She knows all-too-well the horrors of rape and the feeling of no justice being done.

Van Pelt found Rosa’s bravery in coming forward and testifying on behalf of this legislation to be moving and inspirational.

“I really want to commend Rosa because she speaks for so many women. Rosa is like a light to me, shining bright,” said Senator Van Pelt. “So many victims are cloaking themselves and want to be anonymous because of what they suffered, but Rosa has never been quiet, and she has never forgotten what happened to her over 30 years ago. Her commitment today is what is bringing us in the Senate of the state of Illinois to a vote on this legislation.”

The measure passed the Senate yesterday without opposition. The vote was 54 - 0. The proposal now goes to the House of Representatives.

Click the link below to hear Senator Van Pelt’s comments given on the Senate floor in support of the bill.

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