DC: US attorney calls for an end to statute of limitations in sex crimes

WASHINGTON – The U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia is urging the D.C. city council to eliminate the 15-year statute of limitations on sex crimes. U.S. Attorney Ron Machen says advances in DNA have erased the need for such a law. But a bill that would wipe the statute off the books has gone nowhere since being introduced early last year.

Since at least 2004, the U.S. Attorney’s Office has repeatedly asked the D.C. city council to eliminate the statute of limitations on sex crimes. The council members have listened. But other than increasing the statute from six to 15 years, they have refused to eliminate it. Full Article

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After a certain point (ten years for argument sake) nobody should be able to be prosecuted for anything. DNA is one thing, but as time passes facts surrounding circumstances and motive become distorted. Justice is often confused with vengeance and revenge, I don’t think people ought to get away with illegal activity, however if the systems in place can’t work in a timely manner (ten years is a long time) are they really working at all?

Statutes of limitations were not invented so defendants could get away with crimes, but so the legal system can’t abuse it’s power and resources to wait until enough evidence surfaces. If DNA and other crime solving, investigating, and prosecuting methods are so perfect why get rid of the statues of limitations?

Of course the US Attorney wants to make this law. Restitution lawsuits are a good retirement income for Washington attorneys!

By rejecting the US Attorney’s suggestions, D.C. has in effect cast aspersions upon his professional judgment. He is a professional man and doesn’t have to tolerate that. He should immediately resign his office in protest. In the circumstances, it is the only decent thing left for him to do.