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State Lawmakers Hear Bills To Help Sex Assault Victims

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AUSTIN (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Texas lawmakers are advancing proposals to help sexual assault victims.

State Sen. John Whitmire is chairman of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. The Houston Democrat expressed support Tuesday for legislation to require hospitals to provide more treatment and opportunities to preserve evidence.

The U.S. Justice Department estimates two out of every three sexual assaults go unreported, and reporting doesn’t always lead to prosecution. An estimated 20,000 Texas cases have been stalled by untested evidence kits.

State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, said her bill would require the state to track services provided by hospitals. The Democrat has already won committee approval of another bill addressing the evidence collection.

A victim named Nicole Anderson told the committee that “when the monster walks away, he’ll do it again to someone else.”

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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