"We put in place this law that will increase the look back window of child abuse cases from three years to ten years," says State Senator Tim Kennedy, referring to repeat offenders. "The sentences will go up from 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison up to 25 years in prison." Jay J. Bolvin's father was sentenced to 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison, even though he was convicted of attacking another child four years earlier, but the judge could not take that into consideration in sentencing because of the three year look back window.
Jay-J’s Law will crackdown on repeat child abuse by enacting the following changes to the penal code:
- It amends aggravated assault upon a person less than 11 years old. An individual will be guilty of aggravated assault if he severely injures a child and has been previously convicted of assault or attempted assault upon a child in the preceding 10 years, instead of the current three years.
- Aggravated assault upon a person less than 11 years old is increased from a class E felony to a class D felony. A third child abuse conviction would make aggravated assault upon a person less than 11 years old a class B felony.
- In severe cases, Jay-J’s Law will also allow law enforcement to charge individuals who recklessly commit serious repeat child abuse with first-degree assault, a class B felony.
Kennedy says the Assembly must now make this is a priority. "Last year the Senate passed it, but the Assembly dragged its feet. We cannot waste any more time, and we have run out of excuses," claims Kennedy.