2016 Legislature                            CS for CS for SB 636
    2         An act relating to evidence collected in sexual
    3         offense investigations; creating s. 943.326, F.S.;
    4         requiring that a sexual offense evidence kit or other
    5         DNA evidence be submitted to a member of the statewide
    6         criminal analysis laboratory system within a specified
    7         timeframe after specified occurrences; requiring a
    8         medical provider or law enforcement agency to inform
    9         an alleged victim of a sexual offense of certain
   10         information relating to sexual offense evidence kits;
   11         requiring the retention of specified evidence;
   12         requiring adoption and dissemination of guidelines and
   13         procedures by certain entities by a specified date;
   14         requiring the testing of sexual offense evidence kits
   15         within a specified timeframe after submission to a
   16         member of the statewide criminal analysis laboratory;
   17         providing requirements for such guidelines and
   18         procedures; providing construction; providing an
   19         effective date.
   21  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   23         Section 1. Section 943.326, Florida Statutes, is created to
   24  read:
   25         943.326 DNA evidence collected in sexual offense
   26  investigations.—
   27         (1) A sexual offense evidence kit, or other DNA evidence if
   28  a kit is not collected, must be submitted to a member of the
   29  statewide criminal analysis laboratory system under s. 943.32
   30  for forensic testing within 30 days after:
   31         (a) Receipt of the evidence by a law enforcement agency if
   32  a report of the sexual offense is made to the law enforcement
   33  agency; or
   34         (b) A request to have the evidence tested is made to the
   35  medical provider or the law enforcement agency by:
   36         1. The alleged victim;
   37         2. The alleged victim’s parent, guardian, or legal
   38  representative, if the alleged victim is a minor; or
   39         3. The alleged victim’s personal representative, if the
   40  alleged victim is deceased.
   41         (2) An alleged victim or, if applicable, the person
   42  representing the alleged victim under subparagraph (1)(b)2. or
   43  subparagraph (1)(b)3. must be informed of the purpose of
   44  submitting evidence for testing and the right to request testing
   45  under subsection (1) by:
   46         (a) A medical provider conducting a forensic physical
   47  examination for purposes of a sexual offense evidence kit; or
   48         (b) A law enforcement agency that collects other DNA
   49  evidence associated with the sexual offense if a kit is not
   50  collected under paragraph (a).
   51         (3) A collected sexual offense evidence kit must be
   52  retained in a secure, environmentally safe manner until the
   53  prosecuting agency has approved its destruction.
   54         (4) By January 1, 2017, the department and each laboratory
   55  within the statewide criminal analysis laboratory system, in
   56  coordination with the Florida Council Against Sexual Violence,
   57  shall adopt and disseminate guidelines and procedures for the
   58  collection, submission, and testing of DNA evidence that is
   59  obtained in connection with an alleged sexual offense. The
   60  timely submission and testing of sexual offense evidence kits is
   61  a core public safety issue. Testing of sexual offense evidence
   62  kits must be completed no later than 120 days after submission
   63  to a member of the statewide criminal analysis laboratory
   64  system.
   65         (a) The guidelines and procedures must include the
   66  requirements of this section, standards for how evidence is to
   67  be packaged for submission, what evidence must be submitted to a
   68  member of the statewide criminal analysis laboratory system, and
   69  timeframes for when the evidence must be submitted, analyzed,
   70  and compared to DNA databases.
   71         (b) The testing requirements of this section are satisfied
   72  when a member of the statewide criminal analysis laboratory
   73  system tests the contents of the sexual offense evidence kit in
   74  an attempt to identify the foreign DNA attributable to a
   75  suspect. If a sexual offense evidence kit is not collected, the
   76  laboratory may receive and examine other items directly related
   77  to the crime scene, such as clothing or bedding or personal
   78  items left behind by the suspect. If probative information is
   79  obtained from the testing of the sexual offense evidence kit,
   80  the examination of other evidence should be based on the
   81  potential evidentiary value to the case and determined through
   82  cooperation among the investigating agency, the laboratory, and
   83  the prosecutor.
   84         (5) A violation of this section does not create:
   85         (a) A cause of action or a right to challenge the admission
   86  of evidence.
   87         (b) A cause of action for damages or any other relief.
   88         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2016.