Legislation Assembly Deputy Republican Leader Nancy F. Muñoz sponsors that provides sexual assault victims with protection against their offenders today won General Assembly approval.
The “Sexual Assault Survivor Protection Act of 2015” (A-4078), allows victims to obtain protection without filing criminal charges.
“Sexual assault is physically and psychologically devastating; and victims too often are embarrassed or feel they are in some way to blame for the attack,” said Muñoz, R-Union, Morris and Somerset. “As a result, only a very small percentage of victims file criminal charges. Unless they report the crime, they cannot obtain a restraining order. This leaves their attacker free to harass or assault them again.”
The bill allows the court to issue a temporary protective order regardless of whether the alleged victim has filed criminal charges. It prohibits the alleged offender from having any contact or communication, including personal, written, telephone or via electronic device, with victims and their family members, employers, and employees.
Under current law, restraining orders are predominately used for victims of domestic violence.
In addition, the measure prohibits stalking, following or harassing, including cyber-harassing, the alleged victim.