(Victor Valley)– Tuesday, Assemblyman Steve Knight’s (R-Antelope Valley) measure extending the statute of limitations for the illegal use of hidden cameras unanimously passed out of the Assembly Public Safety Committee.
Government’s main priority and responsibility is to protect and ensure the public’s safety. Currently, there is discrepancy in law that prematurely closes the window of opportunity for victims of the illegal use of hidden cameras, and Assembly Bill 708 corrects this to protect the privacy of individuals.
Recently, an investigation took place in Sacramento County where a man was accused of secretly videotaping individuals in his home when they would normally expect complete privacy. In this case, many of the recordings date back 20 years, outside the current time frame allowed for prosecution of such crimes.
Regardless of the timing of the criminal complaint relating to hidden cameras, district attorneys should be allowed to prosecute an individual for the crime committed. This measure will allow victims to file a complaint up to one year from the time the crime has been discovered, as opposed to when the crime was committed (current law).
“Predators are operating for years before their activities are discovered. In the case of hidden camera devices, the evidence may be too old to seek justice for victims in the criminal court. This is simply not acceptable. AB 708 will ensure victims have ample time to have their case heard,” said Assemblyman Knight. “This measure is necessary to ensure public safety and allow district attorneys the tools they need to protect individual privacy.”
Sacramento County District Attorney Jan Scully was present in committee this morning to testify in support of this important measure.
Scully states “Perpetrators keep “evidence” of their crime secret for years. The harm has been done, but the statute of limitations bars prosecution. AB 708 is necessary to ensure that those who violate the privacy rights of others will be held accountable and that their victims can receive justice, regardless of when the illegal recording was made.”
AB 708 will next be heard in Assembly Appropriations Committee in April.