My daughter was molested by her third-grade teacher. There were numerous times that the teacher was caught acting inappropriately with students and there were many who failed to report. That teacher molested his students for seven years until my daughter and I reported him to the police. Eventually, the teacher went to prison, however, nothing happened to those who failed to report. In my opinion, this puts all children in their care at risk for being abused because if there is no consequence to pay for failing to report then they will continue to not report, and the predator will continue to abuse.
A “mandated reporter” is someone who has to report suspected child abuse or neglect to law enforcement. A mandated reporter who fails to report an incident of known or reasonably suspected child abuse or neglect is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months confinement in a county jail or by a fine of $1000 or both imprisonment and a fine. The statute of limitation for failing to report is one year starting when the mandated reporter failed to report the suspected abuse or neglect.
Current law allows victims only one year to bring a case against a mandated reported who failed to report an incident of sexual assault. By the time the sexual abuse of a child is discovered, the mandated reporter may no longer be prosecuted for failing to report sexual abuse of a child, since the statute is only one year.
AB 2302 would extend the statute of limitations for the failure to report sexual assault of a child from one year to five years. This bill helps ensure any mandated reporter who fails to report sexual assault of a child can be held accountable for failing to report and protect that child.