Iowa eliminates statute of limitations for child sex crimes

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FILE- In this Nov. 19, 2020, file photo, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds updates the state’s response to the coronavirus outbreak during a news conference in Johnston, Iowa. Reynolds’ administration is using $10 million in federal pandemic relief funds to pay the salaries of state police officers, who have played only a small role in Iowa’s virus response. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa has joined more than a dozen other states in eliminating the statute of limitations for several child sex abuse crimes.

Gov. Kim Reynolds signed the measure into law on Wednesday. It eliminates the statute of limitations for sex crimes against children under 18, including sexual abuse, incest, sexual exploitation and human trafficking.

It does not eliminate the state’s statute of limitations for bringing a civil claim, which gives Iowans up to a year after they turn 18 to file a lawsuit over abuse.

If the abuse was by a counselor, therapist or school employee, survivors can file claims up to five years after they are no longer enrolled at the school or receiving treatment from the therapist or counselor.

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