Honorable Aaron Pena, Chair, House Committee on Criminal Jurisprudence
John S. O'Brien, Director, Legislative Budget Board
SB78 by Shapiro (Relating to the creation of the offense of continuous sexual abuse of a child, the prosecution and punishment of that offense, and the consequences of a conviction for that offense.), As Engrossed
The provision of the bill that is the subject of this analysis would amend the Penal Code by creating the offense of continuous sexual abuse of young child or children. The offense would be committed if during a period that is 90 of more days in duration, the person commits the offense of aggravated kidnapping if the defendant committed the offense the intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually, indecency with a child (engaging in sexual contact), sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, burglary with the intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually, and sexual performance of a child. The offense would be punishable as a felony of the first degree, punishable by imprisonment in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for life, or for any term of not more than 99 years or less than 25 years.
A person serving a sentence for the offense of continuous sexual abuse of young child or children would not be eligible for release on parole until serving, without consideration of good conduct time, one-half of the sentence or 30 calendar years, whichever is less, but in no event is the inmate eligible for release on parole in less than 25 calendar years. Mandatory supervision release would also not be a possibility.
For fiscal year 2006, The Texas Department of Criminal Justice admitted 2,444 individuals for sexual offenses committed against children. Assuming the same number of offenders in future years, the additional impact to criminal justice populations from the bill would vary greatly depending on the assumption regarding the duration involved in the commission of the sexual offenses, which would determine the number of times the offense of continuous sexual abuse of young child or children would apply. A check of TDCJ records, Department of Public Safety records, and Office of Court Administration records did not reveal any information that would help in an accurate assumption regarding the time duration of the offense; therefore, the probable impact of implementing the bill cannot be determined.
The probable impact of implementing the bill cannot be determined due to the unavailability of reliable data or information related to the duration involved in the commission of sexual offenses committed against children.