HOUSE BILL 1109
State of Washington
2021 Regular Session
ByRepresentatives Orwall, Mosbrucker, Simmons, Goodman, Leavitt, Valdez, Kloba, Graham, Morgan, Caldier, Rule, and Macri
Prefiled 01/07/21.Read first time 01/11/21.Referred to Committee on Public Safety.
AN ACT Relating to supporting victims of sexual assault; amending RCW 43.101.278
; and adding a new section to chapter 5.70
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1.
A new section is added to chapter 5.70
RCW to read as follows:
(1) For any sexual assault kit under RCW 5.70.050
where forensic analysis has generated a profile that has resulted in a hit in the combined DNA index system, the applicable law enforcement agency and prosecuting attorney shall, upon request of the office of the attorney general, report changes in case status as to any related criminal investigation and prosecution to the office of the attorney general in accordance with policies and procedures established under subsection (2) of this section.
(2) The office of the attorney general shall establish policies and procedures for the reporting requirement under this section. The office of the attorney general may consult with the sexual assault forensic examination best practices advisory group in determining the types of information required for status updates under this section. The office of the attorney general shall submit semiannual reports on the status of investigations and prosecutions for sexual assault cases under this section to the sexual assault forensic examination best practices advisory group, the appropriate committees of the legislature, and the governor. The initial reports must be submitted by December 1, 2021, and by July 31, 2022, and subsequent reports must be submitted by January 31st and July 31st of each year thereafter.
and 2020 c 26 s 8 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) Subject to the availability of amounts appropriated for this specific purpose, the commission shall ((develop a proposal for a))conduct an annual case review program. The ((commission shall research, design, and develop case review strategies designed to optimize outcomes in sexual assault investigations through improved))program must review case files from law enforcement agencies and prosecuting attorneys selected by the commission in order to identify changes to training and investigatory practices necessary to optimize outcomes in sexual assault investigations and prosecutions involving adult victims. The ((proposed)) program must ((evaluate))include:
(a) An evaluation of whether current training and practices foster a trauma-informed, victim-centered approach to victim interviews and that identifies best practices and current gaps in training and assesses the integration of the community resiliency model((. The program will include a));
(b) A comparison of cases involving investigators and interviewers who have participated in training to cases involving investigators and interviewers who have not participated in training((. The program will also include other randomly));
(c) Randomly selected cases for a systematic review to assess whether current practices conform to national best practices for a multidisciplinary approach to investigating sexual assault cases and interacting with survivors; and
(d) An analysis of the impact that race and ethnicity have on sexual assault case outcomes.
(2) The case review program may review and access files, including all reports and recordings, pertaining to closed cases involving allegations of adult sexual assault only. Any law enforcement agency or prosecuting attorney selected for the program by the commission shall provide the commission with any requested case files and other documents necessary to conduct case reviews, provided that the case is not linked to an ongoing, open investigation and that redactions may be made where appropriate and necessary. Agencies and prosecuting attorneys shall include available information on the race and ethnicity of all sexual assault victims in the relevant case files provided to the commission. Case files and other documents must be provided to the commission according to appropriate deadlines established by the commission in consultation with the agency or prosecuting attorney.
(3) If a law enforcement agency has not participated in the training under RCW 43.101.272 by July 1, 2022, the commission may prioritize the agency for selection to participate in the program under this section.
(4) In designing and conducting the program, the commission shall consult and collaborate with experts in trauma-informed and victim-centered training, experts in sexual assault investigations and prosecutions, victim advocates, and other stakeholders identified by the commission. The commission may form a multidisciplinary working group for the purpose of carrying out the requirements of this section.
(((3)))(5) The commission shall submit a report with a summary of its ((proposal))work to the governor and the appropriate committees of the legislature by December ((1, 2020))1st of each year.
(((4) This section expires July 1, 2021.))
and 2019 c 93 s 9 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) In addition to all other rights provided in law, a sexual assault survivor has the right to:
(a) Receive a medical forensic examination at no cost;
(b) Receive written notice of the benefits under the crime victim compensation program from the medical facility providing the survivor medical treatment relating to the sexual assault;
(c) Receive a referral to an accredited community sexual assault program and, in the case of a survivor who is a minor, a referral to a children's advocacy center, when presenting at a medical facility and when reporting an assault to a law enforcement officer;
(d) Consult with a sexual assault survivor's advocate throughout the investigatory process and prosecution of the survivor's case, including during any medical evidentiary examination ((and during)), any interview by law enforcement officers, prosecuting attorneys, or defense attorneys, ((unless an advocate cannot be summoned in a timely manner,)) and court proceedings, regardless of whether a survivor has waived the right in a previous examination or interview;
(((c)))(e) Be informed, upon the request of a survivor, of when the forensic analysis of his or her sexual assault kit and other related physical evidence will be or was completed, the results of the forensic analysis, and whether the analysis yielded a DNA profile and match, provided that the disclosure is made at an appropriate time so as to not impede or compromise an ongoing investigation;
(((d)))(f) Receive notice prior to the destruction or disposal of his or her sexual assault kit;
(((e)))(g) Receive a copy of the police report related to the investigation without charge; ((and
(f)))(h) Review his or her statement before law enforcement refers a case to the prosecuting attorney;
(i) Receive timely notifications from the law enforcement agency and prosecuting attorney as to the status of the investigation and any related prosecution of the survivor's case;
(j) Be informed by the law enforcement agency and prosecuting attorney as to the expected and appropriate time frames for receiving responses to the survivor's inquiries regarding the status of the investigation and any related prosecution of the survivor's case; and further, receive responses to the survivor's inquiries in a manner consistent with those time frames;
(k) Access interpreter services where necessary to facilitate communication throughout the investigatory process and prosecution of the survivor's case; and
(l) Where the sexual assault survivor is a minor, have:
(i) The prosecutor consider and discuss the survivor's requests for remote video testimony under RCW 9A.44.150 when appropriate; and
(ii) The court consider requests from the prosecutor for safeguarding the survivor's feelings of security and safety in the courtroom in order to facilitate the survivor's testimony and participation in the criminal justice process.
(2) A sexual assault survivor retains all the rights of this section regardless of whether the survivor agrees to participate in the criminal justice system and regardless of whether the survivor agrees to receive a forensic examination to collect evidence.
(3) If a survivor is denied any right enumerated in subsection (1) of this section, he or she may seek an order directing compliance by the relevant party or parties by filing a petition in the superior court in the county in which the sexual assault occurred and providing notice of such petition to the relevant party or parties. Compliance with the right is the sole remedy available to the survivor. The court shall expedite consideration of a petition filed under this subsection.
(4) Nothing contained in this section may be construed to provide grounds for error in favor of a criminal defendant in a criminal proceeding. Except in the circumstances as provided in subsection (3) of this section, this section does not grant a new cause of action or remedy against the state, its political subdivisions, law enforcement agencies, or prosecuting attorneys. The failure of a person to make a reasonable effort to protect or adhere to the rights enumerated in this section may not result in civil liability against that person. This section does not limit other civil remedies or defenses of the sexual assault survivor or the offender.
(5) For the purposes of this section:
(a) "Law enforcement officer" means a general authority Washington peace officer, as defined in RCW 10.93.020
, or any person employed by a private police agency at a public school as described in RCW 28A.150.010
or an institution of higher education, as defined in RCW 28B.10.016
(b) "Sexual assault survivor" means any person who is a victim, as defined in RCW 7.69.020
, of sexual assault. However, if a victim is incapacitated, deceased, or a minor, sexual assault survivor also includes any lawful representative of the victim, including a parent, guardian, spouse, or other designated representative, unless the person is an alleged perpetrator or suspect.
(c) "Sexual assault survivor's advocate" means any person who is defined in RCW 5.60.060
as a sexual assault advocate, or a crime victim advocate.
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