Florida Senate - 2022 SB 660 By Senator Cruz 18-00422-22 2022660__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to sexual offense victim rights; 3 amending s. 943.326, F.S.; requiring the Department of 4 Law Enforcement to create statewide policies and 5 procedures regarding contact with alleged victims, or 6 their representatives, concerning sexual offense 7 evidence kits; requiring the department to ensure that 8 law enforcement agencies adopt the statewide policies 9 and procedures; specifying requirements for the 10 policies and procedures; requiring that each alleged 11 victim of a sexual offense be notified of specified 12 rights; providing an effective date. 13 14 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 15 16 Section 1. Present subsection (5) of section 943.326, 17 Florida Statutes, is redesignated as subsection (6), a new 18 subsection (5) is added to that section, and paragraph (f) is 19 added to subsection (4) of that section, to read: 20 943.326 DNA evidence collected in sexual offense 21 investigations.— 22 (4) The department and each laboratory within the statewide 23 criminal analysis laboratory system, in coordination with the 24 Florida Council Against Sexual Violence, shall adopt and 25 disseminate guidelines and procedures for the collection, 26 submission, and testing of DNA evidence that is obtained in 27 connection with an alleged sexual offense. The timely submission 28 and testing of sexual offense evidence kits is a core public 29 safety issue. Testing of sexual offense evidence kits must be 30 completed no later than 120 days after submission to a member of 31 the statewide criminal analysis laboratory system. 32 (f) The department shall create statewide policies and 33 procedures regarding contact with an alleged victim or, if 34 applicable, the person representing the alleged victim under 35 subparagraph (1)(b)2. or subparagraph (1)(b)3. concerning sexual 36 offense evidence kits and shall ensure that each law enforcement 37 agency adopts such policies and procedures. The policies and 38 procedures must be trauma-informed and survivor-focused and must 39 require: 40 1. Each law enforcement agency to designate at least one 41 person trained in trauma and victim response to receive all 42 inquiries concerning sexual offense evidence kits and to serve 43 as a liaison between the law enforcement agency and the alleged 44 victim or the alleged victim’s representative. 45 2. Alleged victims of a sexual offense be provided with the 46 contact information for the designated liaison at the time that 47 a sexual offense evidence kit is collected. 48 3. In advance of or at the beginning of a medical forensic 49 examination or a law enforcement interview, that medical 50 professionals, victim advocates, law enforcement officers, or 51 prosecutors provide the alleged victim with a victim’s rights 52 information card or brochure as required under s. 960.001, which 53 must also contain the rights granted under this section. This 54 card or brochure must be available, at a minimum, in English, 55 Spanish, and Creole. 56 (5) Each alleged victim of a sexual offense shall be 57 notified of her or his right to: 58 (a) Consult with a sexual offense victim advocate who can 59 provide confidentiality and privileged communications, and that 60 waiving the right to a victim advocate in one instance does not 61 negate this right. The medical facility, law enforcement 62 officer, or prosecutor shall inform the alleged victim of this 63 right in advance of or at the beginning of a medical forensic 64 examination or law enforcement interview, and the examination or 65 interview may not continue unless the alleged victim knowingly 66 and voluntarily waives this right. 67 (b) Be informed, upon request, of the location, testing 68 date, and testing results of a sexual offense evidence kit; 69 whether a DNA profile was obtained from the sexual offense 70 evidence kit; whether there are matches to DNA profiles in state 71 or federal databases; and the estimated destruction date for the 72 sexual offense evidence kit, all in a manner of communication 73 designated by the alleged victim. 74 (c) Be informed when there is any change in the status of 75 the alleged victim’s case, including if the case has been closed 76 or reopened. 77 (d) Receive written notification, upon request, from the 78 appropriate official with custody of an alleged victim’s sexual 79 offense evidence kit not later than 60 days before the date of 80 the intended destruction or disposal. 81 (e) Be granted further preservation of the sexual offense 82 evidence kit or its probative contents. 83 (f) Designate a person of the alleged victim’s choosing to 84 act as a recipient of the information provided under this 85 subsection. 86 (g) Be informed about how to file a report with law 87 enforcement and have the sexual offense evidence kit tested in 88 the future if the alleged victim chose not to file a report when 89 the sexual offense evidence kit was first collected. 90 (h) Be informed about the right to apply for victim 91 compensation. 92 Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2022.