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Sunday, May 30, 2021

House passes Rep. Craven’s bill that eliminates the marital sexual assault exemption

House votes to ban odious loophole 

The House of Representatives passed Rep. Robert E. Craven’s (D-Dist. 32, North Kingstown) legislation (2021-H 6155) which eliminates the marital sexual assault exception when a victim is incapacitated, disabled, or helpless.

“This legislation is long overdue because no one, whether they are married or not, should fall victim to sexual assault if they are incapacitated and unable to give consent.  The law we are amending is an arcane rule that runs counter to the women’s rights we are trying to support and bring into the 21st century.  

"No longer will this gross legal loophole be utilized to protect rapists and sexual abusers who target their spouses from the accountability and justice that these vile individuals deserve for their heinous actions,” said Representative Craven, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

The legislation was cosponsored by Rep. Camille Vella-Wilkinson (D-Dist. 21, Warwick), Rep. Edith H. Ajello (D-Dist. 1, Providence), and Rep. Gregg Amore (D-Dist. 65, East Providence).

The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration where Sen. Dawn Euer (D-Dist. 13, Newport, Jamestown) has sponsored the legislation (2021-S 0834).