At a press conference today, a bipartisan group of lawmakers from the House and Senate urged the swift adoption of legislation to comprehensively update Minnesota’s criminal sexual conduct code to address contradictions, loopholes, and other shortcomings which create barriers for survivors to receive justice. The push follows a recent Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that when prosecuting a sexual assault case, “mentally incapacitated” doesn’t include a person who became intoxicated after voluntarily consuming alcohol.
In response, Senator Erin Murphy (DFL-Saint Paul) released the following statement:
“The important work of survivors, advocates, and a broad representation of stakeholders and policy makers is poised to become law, including strengthening the standard of consent and closing the incapacitation loophole. My tremendous thanks to Representatives Moller and O’Neill for their leadership.
“This legislation represents real progress in pursuit of justice and must be part of the essential work of the 2021 Legislature, to do what is necessary to prevent sexual assault and deliver justice for survivors.”
Lawmakers were joined by survivors, advocates, prosecutors, and members of law enforcement in support of the bill. The House Public Safety and Judiciary committees have both approved the legislation. The Senate Judiciary & Public Safety Committee is scheduled to consider language exclusively addressing the “mental incapacitation” provision tonight at 6:30 p.m.