Illinois lawmakers push to make it easier to punish some child p - KMOV.com

Illinois lawmakers push to make it easier to punish some child predators

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(Credit: KMOV) (Credit: KMOV)
ST. CLAIR COUNTY, Ill. (KMOV.com) -

Some Illinois lawmakers are pushing to end the statute of limitations on child sex crimes.

Under current state law, sexual offenses against children must be reported within 20 years of the survivor turning 18-years-old.

One woman told News 4 the existing law allowed a priest to get away with raping her many decades ago.

“Father said I was an evil child, that he had been sent by God to save my soul. He raped me. I was only 6-years-old, had no idea what happened, had no words for it,” said victim Barbara Dorris.

Dorris is the Managing Director at the local Survivors’ Network of the Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) office.

Dorris said the sexual abuse continued for six years. The priest faced no punishment.

“Child abuse is one the few crimes in which victims don’t realize they are victims for decades,” said St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly.

Kelly said getting rid of the statute of limitations is the right thing to do especially because other violent crimes such as homicide, involuntary manslaughter and arson have no statute of limitations.

A bill to end the statute of limitations for child sex crimes has passed a state senate committee and is now heading to the full senate.

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