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Bipartisan Bills Target Date Rape Drug Crimes

Sacramento, CA – A bipartisan coalition seeks to hand out harsher punishments for “date rape” drug related crimes than the recently implemented Prop. 47 laws allow.

Today, the coalition, led by Democratic State Senator Cathleen Galgiani, of Stockton, and Republican Assemblyman Tom Lackey, of Palmdale, introduced two bills, SB 333 and AB 46 that would restore prosecutors’ ability to bring felony charges for crimes involving illegal possession of drugs, such as Rohypnol and GHB, that are commonly linked with sexual assaults. According to proponents, district attorneys have successfully used this ability to ensure justice in related cases where a lack of other admissible evidence might otherwise allow a perpetrator to evade punishment. Current Prop. 47 guidelines now allow only minimal punishment. If passed by the State Legislature, voters will be able to weigh in on their ballots during the next statewide election.

In stating her support of the bills Galgiani says, “We should not wait for women to be victimized before serious charges are available to prosecutors. A person found in possession of these drugs is likely intending to use them to commit a sexual assault — not for personal use. Law enforcement must be able to charge a person accordingly.”

In concurrence, Lackey states, “If you have this drug in your pocket, it’s not to get high…we need to do what we can to stand against this type of behavior in the most powerful sense possible. Proposition 47, in my opinion, was not intended to let this sort of thing happen. We need to fix it — soon.”