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General Assembly advancing bills that would update Maryland sexual assault laws

March 25th, 2017 by WCBC Radio

A half-dozen bills moving through the General Assembly would update Maryland's sexual assault laws and, advocates say, make it easier for victims to secure justice.

One measure would sweep aside a centuries-old vestige of English law that requires prosecutors to prove that rape victims resisted their attackers. Another would broaden the definition of rape to include a wider of range of attacks.

And one would end Maryland's status as one of a minority of states that don't allow women to terminate the parental rights of a rapist if the assault results in pregnancy.

Several bills have passed both chambers — some unanimously — though none has yet been finalized. They could still be modified or fail.

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