Senator Saland Legislation To Strengthen Penalties Against Child Sex Offenders Passes Senate

Stephen M. Saland

May 16, 2006

Senator Steve Saland (R,C Poughkeepsie), today announced that the Senate has passed his legislation that would impose stricter penalties on adults who sexually abuse children in their care (S.7353).

"Tragically, research shows that approximately 90 percent of children who are sexually abused are victimized by adults who are known to them most often over a long period of time," said Saland. "Children who are abused sustain deep, lifelong emotional and psychological scars that are difficult to recover from, especially when the abuse is repeated or is inflicted by a person in a position of trust or authority. This legislation will help make sure that perpetrators are not given the ability to return more quickly to the community and abuse the same children or other children again."

Currently, when a perpetrator is convicted of multiple crimes against a child, the courts may sentence the perpetrator concurrently rather than consecutively.

"Concurrent sentencing for multiple criminal acts denies the horrific nature and impact these crimes have on children and potentially enables a perpetrator to have access to further abuse a child who has already been traumatized. By ensuring an end to concurrent sentencing and requiring that sentences for multiple abuse convictions be served consecutively, this legislation will require lengthier, more appropriate sentences, affording greater protection to our children and our communities," Saland concluded.