Caltagirone Backs Plan to Remove Statute of Limitations for Child Sex Abuse Cases
March 15, 2016
A plan to remove time limits for victims of childhood sexual assault to bring criminal and civil cases against their abusers now has the backing of the former chairman of the committee tasked with reviewing the proposal.
State Rep. Thomas R. Caltagirone, a Reading Democrat, issued a statement today calling for the removal of both the criminal and civil statutes of limitations and the opening of a window for victims already past the current limits to bring civil cases.
The former House Judiciary Committee chairman had voiced opposition to the measure in the past. But he said today that after some soul searching in the wake of a state investigation that found rampant abuse by Altoona-area priests was covered up for decades, he concluded more needs to be done.
"I feel compelled to act and do what I can to move legislation forward that will help protect our children: past, present and future," Caltagirone said in a statement. "I will spend my remaining time in the legislature protecting children. To that end, I support the removal of the time limits for criminal charges and civil matters, as well as, a limited window for civil action to be filed by past victims of childhood sexual abuse."
The effort to remove the time limits has been led by state Rep. Mark Rozzi, a Muhlenberg Township Democrat. The bill has stalled in the Judiciary Committee for the past few sessions.
Caltagirone's no longer a member of the committee but Rozzi said he expects the endorsement of the measure by the committee's longtime past chairman will still carry a lot of weight.