Rape is one of the few crimes that is more based almost entirely on one's memory and recount of the incident, and stories of "he said, she said", rather than solid, clear and convincing evidence. Eyewitness testimony has proved ineffective enough, that if there was no statute of limitations on rape, and a rape was tried 30 years after it happened, someone who resembles the attacker could easily be wrongly convicted, because the victim wants justice after such a long period of time, and mistakes the look-alike for the attacker. A statute of limitations is a very good idea in rape cases, since stories change and memories fade. There should be an exception, though, to this statute of limitations. When DNA analysis is part of the evidence to support the validity of the identification of the attacker, then the statute of limitations should be waived.
Statutes of limitations ensure that everyone knows that there are differences in crimes. Without statutes of limitations, a crime such as rape may end up with the same jail sentence as murder. In this case, there will be no line drawn between the two crimes, and someone who commits rape may also commit murder, believing to get the same sentence anyway.
It is totally wrong and unjust to bring allegations of sexual assault including rapes , many years after the alleged incident happened . Memories do fade ! In the UK people are charged with offences that happened for example ..... Between 1984 or 1985 or sometime between 1985 to 1989 . Its as if the person is not sure of the date of the alleged assault . Having a statute of limitation of say 10 to 15 years makes sure those persons who decide to bring allegations years after the assault is claimed to have taken place , do so when their memories retain such details better , in addition there is a greater opportunity for the accused to mount a defense which is equitable and witnesses are more likely still to be living .
Our founding fathers believed in a system where some bad people can get away, so no good people are incriminated. Without a statue of limitations on crimes, imagine being charged for something someone claims you've done years ago. Even if you beat the case it could cost you a lot while doing so. Statutes of limitations are needed.
While the crime of rape is very painful, a society based on law must create limitations. Rage and revenge can go on forever, in some hearts. But, a smart society creates a responsible arena for some of it, and then lets the rest of the crime become a part of history.
It is incredibly difficult to prove rape under normal circumstances. To give false hope to a victim with a not guilty verdict being inevitable (assuming the jury doesn't unjustly ignore the lack of actual evidence) seems a cruel thing to do. Even with DNA evidence, all that is truly proven is that sex took place - not coercion. More effort should be put into treating the victim in a positive and constructive manner rather than focusing on the negativity of retribution especially since the story won't likely end well for all the people involved (including family members on both sides). Of course, it's an entirely different matter if the police secretly dedicate some resources to keeping tabs on a suspected rapist (without violating the suspect's rights); that would be a much more just outcome.
If the woman/girl was too afraid to say anything for 10 years, then yes. She should have said something earlier. Why would she say something to the courts later? She needed some money so she decides to sue her rapist 10 years later? But if they did not find the rapist until years later or something similar, then my answer is no.
Without a statute of limitation, individuals would have a more difficult time preparing a defense. As time passes, evidence becomes more and more difficult to produce. A rape allegation raised many years after the event might only be supported by the word of the complaining witness (i.E. Victim). Rape allegations are serious matters and should be prosecuted as soon as possible.
Lets forget about the fact that even accusing someone of rape ruins their reputation and immediately demonizes them. So not only that, but we want be able to accuse people of decades later when it's pretty much going to be he said/she said. Rape is in fact not, a special kind of evil equivalent to or worse than murder. Let's stop pretending it is. It should not take you years to accuse someone, this is ridiculous.
Lets say that a woman is raped and she doesn't tell anyone. She goes to the hospital to be checked out, doesn't contact the police. Then 20 years down the road she decides to say something, and then it takes another 20 years to arrest the alleged perpetrator. That is a forty year old case and it should not be a chargeable offense. You must bring an allegation soon after it happens or you lose that claim. It is the same with a civil lawsuit. If you wait too long to bring a civil action against someone then you lose that claim. Its called a continuing controversy that cannot continue forever.
There are many rapists who acted before we were able to properly test DNA and use it as evidence in court cases. We now can test evidence from old cases. But those rapists will still go free because of the statute of limitation. They should be punished so they don't rape again.
The victim will live with the horror of rape for the rest of his or her
life, and there is no way in the world that the attacker should get away with it, just because the police did not catch them in time. Such crimes also represent a psychological defect that should really be identified and addressed, either with jail, or by a doctor.
The argument that police need to move on and investigate other crimes doesn't hold water. OK, fine have a statute of limitations for "investigative priority". Don't ban the government from carrying through charges if evidence just happens to fall into the police's hands.
The standard for conviction is "Beyond a reasonable doubt" without enough corroborative witness evidence there is still reasonable doubt especially over time because then there is the possibility their memories might not be too good. A good defensive lawyer will raise these issues.
As a woman who's been through such a horrific ordeal, the thought of a statute sickens me. There are numerous reasons why this is absurd. For starters, there have been cases where the rapist was unknown due to lack of technology. Years pass, technology catches up and a match is made. If a statute were in place, said rapist could walk free while his victim remains violated and unable to gain closure or seek justice.
It seems biased, seeing as though rape is generally targeted at women. The way the law is now, it favors the rapist over the victim, the former usually being male and the latter female. Lay low long enough and your crime just goes away. It's a sprout from the tree of rape culture and male patriarchy that needs to be pruned.
On the contrary, men have a greater chance of being murdered, but no statute of limitations on that.
I was raped by a hotel manager in Orlando. I was drugged and raped. It took me several years to finally tell the police due the mental state I was in. They told me I only had 4 years. Meanwhile the guy was out raping more boys and men and was in jail at the time of the photo lineup provided by the Orlando Police department submitted to the Wicomico County Maryland Sherriff's office. I was then told I couldn't sue in civil court either for the same reason. I was victimized once by him and twice by the courts. Why are we protecting criminals. Anyone who thinks this law is fair was never raped or sexually assualted and probably shouldn't have a vote to begin with. These are stupid laws that protect the monsters of our society. My life has been hell and he gets 3 meals a day and I pay for it. This is unreal. That is like throwing salt in the wound. I have to live with this forever. I was studying nuclear physics in the NAVY, now I work in restaurants and warehouses. I have no self worth nor do I ever feel that I ever will. When do I get my day in court? Where are my rights? Thank God he was able to keep molesting people even after I came forward. He got out and did it again. My case may have locked him up for life. He now gets out in 2027. I feel like the one who has been in prison.
Rape disproportionately affects women. The statute of limitations on rape is a mechanism that systematically and systemically places women in a subordinate position relative to men. Instead of making issues of rape harder for women, we need to do everything and anything in our power to ensure that rapists are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Rape is an awful crime. If it can be proven 5 or 10 or 20 years later in trial, then by all means the rapist should be punished. Rape should never be forgiven simply because it has been too many years after the crime. I firmly believe rape to be on the same level of murder.
If not convicted, the rapist will continue to rape others. My rapist escaped charges because he had high-priced lawyers and people who lied for him. He raped me while he was being tried for another rape(I later found out). He used his money and the fact that he was in authority figure and I was vulnerable.
Witness/victim testimony is dependent upon memory, a human system that is by its nature biased and tampered with time. However, the heinous nature of the crime itself must come into account. Therefore, I believe that a statute should remain in effect but that the current statute of 4-5 years (dependent upon what state) is absurdly short.