Florida Senate - 2024                                     SB 466
       By Senator Book
       35-00410A-24                                           2024466__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to victims of criminal offenses;
    3         amending s. 960.001, F.S.; providing that private
    4         counsel retained by a sexual offense victim may be
    5         present during victim depositions; providing that
    6         results of a toxicology screening of a sexual assault
    7         victim may not be used to prosecute the victim for
    8         certain offenses; providing an effective date.
   10  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   12         Section 1. Paragraph (q) of subsection (1) of section
   13  960.001, Florida Statutes, is amended, and paragraph (x) is
   14  added to that subsection, to read:
   15         960.001 Guidelines for fair treatment of victims and
   16  witnesses in the criminal justice and juvenile justice systems.—
   17         (1) The Department of Legal Affairs, the state attorneys,
   18  the Department of Corrections, the Department of Juvenile
   19  Justice, the Florida Commission on Offender Review, the State
   20  Courts Administrator and circuit court administrators, the
   21  Department of Law Enforcement, and every sheriff’s department,
   22  police department, or other law enforcement agency as defined in
   23  s. 943.10(4) shall develop and implement guidelines for the use
   24  of their respective agencies, which guidelines are consistent
   25  with the purposes of this act and s. 16(b), Art. I of the State
   26  Constitution and are designed to implement s. 16(b), Art. I of
   27  the State Constitution and to achieve the following objectives:
   28         (q) Presence of victim advocate during discovery
   29  deposition; testimony of victim of a sexual offense.—At the
   30  request of the victim or the victim’s parent, guardian, or
   31  lawful representative, private counsel retained by the victim
   32  and a the victim advocate designated by the state attorney’s
   33  office, sheriff’s office, or municipal police department, or one
   34  representative from a not-for-profit victim services
   35  organization, including, but not limited to, rape crisis
   36  centers, domestic violence advocacy groups, and alcohol abuse or
   37  substance abuse groups, shall be permitted to attend and be
   38  present during any deposition of the victim. The victim of a
   39  sexual offense shall be informed of the right to have the
   40  courtroom cleared of certain persons as provided in s. 918.16
   41  when the victim is testifying concerning that offense.
   42         (x)Immunity for victims from prosecution for certain
   43  misdemeanors predicated on toxicology screening results.—The
   44  results of a toxicology screening conducted on a victim in
   45  conjunction with a sexual assault forensic examination or upon a
   46  report of a sexual offense may not be used to prosecute the
   47  victim for a misdemeanor violation of chapter 893.
   48         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2024.