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Lawmakers push to change meaning of ‘mentally incapacitated’ in Minnesota

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KTTC) — Powerful testimony Wednesday from survivors who say they never got justice.

A teacher: “My rape occurred June 28, 2019.”
A mother: “Even though my rapist’s DNA was found inside of me from the examination, they would be unable to prosecute because I was not completely unconscious the entire assault.”
An attorney: “My rape is something that I can’t shake. It’s taken time for me to slowly heal.”

These women all spoke in front of a Senate committee, pleading for change in the state of Minnesota.

“I’ve contemplated suicide because I didn’t know how I could go on,” one survivor said.

“I chose that night to be a more carefree me, but unfortunately she won’t ever be back,” another said.

The three who shared their sexual assault stories are advocating for the amendment being heard by the Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee. The resurfacing of a sexual assault loophole came to light again recently after a Maple Grove man’s felony rape conviction was dropped because the victim allegedly voluntarily got intoxicated.

It makes a change to a part of Minnesota law that says victims who were voluntarily intoxicated could not be legally sexually assaulted. The amendment will change what ‘mentally incapacitated’ means.

“Now that the [Minnesota] Supreme Court has made its decision. It’s our turn to act,” Sen. Warren Limmer, (R) Maple Grove said.

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Kamie Roesler

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