(SACRAMENTO) – Today, the Assembly Committee on Public Safety unanimously approved Assembly Bill 1746 by Assemblymember Sabrina Cervantes (D-Corona). AB 1746 would expedite the process of prosecuting serial perpetrators of sexual battery and statutory rape.
Under current law, criminal prosecution for certain crimes can be consolidated into a single criminal trial when multiple offenses are committed by the same perpetrator in more than one jurisdiction. These crimes include human trafficking, domestic violence, and child abuse.
However, the crimes of sexual battery and statutory rape are not currently eligible for consolidation into a single trial. This loophole could require a survivor of sexual battery or statutory rape to testify at multiple trials, and repeatedly have to relive the ordeal he or she endured. That experience could be especially traumatic for vulnerable survivors, especially children and minors.
“AB 1746 would close this loophole by making prosecutions of serial sexual battery or statutory rape eligible for consolidation into a single trial,” Assemblymember Cervantes said. “This will protect survivors from having to testify about the trauma they endured at multiple trials, reduce court costs, and allow for the rendering of swift justice to the perpetrators of these heinous crimes.”
Consolidation into a single trial would be optional, and require the approval of all of the relevant district attorneys. The bill is supported by San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan.
AB 1746 is supported by San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan, the California State Sheriffs’ Association, and the Riverside Sheriffs’ Association. It will next be heard by the Assembly Committee on Appropriations. You can find more information about AB 1746 here.
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Sabrina Cervantes represents the 60th District of the California State Assembly, which encompasses the communities of Corona, Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, Norco, and a portion of the City of Riverside.