Efforts to protect sexual assault victims advance

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by Associated Press

kvue.com

Posted on April 25, 2013 at 4:28 PM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas lawmakers are advancing new protections for victims of sexual assault, along with the money to start investigating older cases.

The Senate on Thursday approved a measure that would give victims the right to track the physical evidence as it is submitted for lab analysis. SB 1192 still must pass the House.

Another proposal emerged from the Senate Criminal Justice Committee earlier this week. SB 1191 would require hospitals to gather physical evidence from victims or provide a transfer to a different hospital.

Testimony showed that many hospitals currently refuse to gather evidence because of liability concerns. Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis of Fort Worth wrote both bills.

State budget proposals moving through the legislature also include $11 million to clear a backlog of more than 22,000 untested evidence kits.

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