Ohio Attorney General proposes to eliminate statute of limitations in rape cases

CLEVELAND-- It’s a crime that’s violent, traumatizing and often goes unreported. On Monday, Ohio’s highest law enforcement official announced a proposal to eliminate the statute of limitations for rape. Under current Ohio law, a person who commits rape, cannot be prosecuted for the crime after 20 years have passed.

"I don't think that a rapist ought to be able to run out the clock on justice," said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost.

Yost was flanked by two former Attorneys General, Nancy Rogers and Betty Montgomery, to publicly announce a plea to state lawmakers. They are urging the state legislature to toss out the current 20-year statute of limitations for rape offenses. Yost and five of Ohio's former Attorneys General sent a letter to state lawmakers, requesting that there be no time limit on prosecuting rape cases, just like it is for murder.

"We believe that murder and rape have a lot in common in the sense that they are grievous offenses," Yost said.

"Almost two thirds of sexual assaults are never reported to law enforcement and even some of those that are reported, there's a delay of months, years, sometimes even decades before survivors feel comfortable coming forward," said Sondra Miller, CEO of the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.

Miller said she believes the public has a growing understanding of the impact of sexual assault.

"It's all kinds of reasons why a survivor might wait a certain amount of time and then feel like they should still have access to our public cri...

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