Child Sexual Abuse Statements as Evidence

Child Sexual Abuse Statements as Evidence / SB 1593 – Creates an exception to the hearsay rule in criminal proceedings regarding statements made by young children relative to sexual and physical abuse. Applies to non-testimonial statements made by children under the age of 12. Under the legislation, the admissibility of a non-testimonial statement must be made by the judge in a separate hearing outside the presence of the jury. The bill also sets the stipulations to guide the judge in making the decision as to whether the out-of-court statement is trustworthy. For example, the judge would consider spontaneity or consistency of the statement, the mental state of the child, the motive or lack thereof, and the terminology used, before deciding whether the statement could be used in court. The bill is modeled after an Ohio law which was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Senate Bill 1593 / by Yager, Briggs, Haile, Jackson, Massey / Status: Public Chapter 708 / Effective Date: July 1, 2018 and shall apply to offenses committed on or after that date

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