Current with changes from the 2020 Second Extraordinary Session through Act 60
Section 46:1845 - Additional rights for victims of sexual assaults; notification of rightsA.(1) The rights provided to victims of sexual assault contained in this Section attach whether a victim seeks the assistance of either a law enforcement official or a healthcare provider. A victim of sexual assault retains all the rights of these provisions regardless of whether the victim receives a forensic medical examination or whether a sexual assault collection kit is administered.(2) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, nothing in this Section shall be construed to negate or impair any provision of law relative to the mandatory reporting of crimes against children under the age of eighteen years or to negate or impair the investigation or prosecution of any crime against children under the age of eighteen.B. A victim of sexual assault has the right to be notified of and to request the presence of a sexual assault advocate during the administration of a forensic medical examination or a scheduled interview by a law enforcement official if a sexual assault advocate is reasonably available. Nothing in this Section shall be construed to prohibit the conducting of a forensic medical examination or an interview by a law enforcement official in the absence of a sexual assault advocate.C.(1) The district attorney, prior to trial, shall make reasonable efforts to interview the victim or designated family member to determine the facts of the case and whether the victim or the family is requesting restitution.(2) All law enforcement and judicial agencies shall provide a private setting for conducting all interviews of a victim of sexual assault. "Private setting" shall mean an enclosed room from which the occupants are not visible or otherwise identifiable and whose conversations cannot be heard from outside the room. Only those persons directly and immediately related to the interviewing of the victim, specifically the victim, a social worker, psychologist, or other professional, a victim advocate designated by the sheriff's office or a representative from a not-for-profit victim service organization including but not limited to rape crisis centers, sexual assault centers, domestic violence advocacy groups, and alcohol abuse or substance abuse groups providing emotional support to the victim, shall be present unless the victim requests the exclusion of such person from the interview, and when appropriate, the parent or parents of the victim.(3) The victim of sexual assault and the victim's family may refuse any requests for interviews with the attorney for the defendant or any employee or agent working for the attorney for the defendant. If the victim of sexual assault is a minor, the parent or guardian of the victim may refuse to permit the minor to be interviewed by the attorney for the defendant or any employee or agent working for the attorney for the defendant. Before any victim of sexual assault may be subpoenaed to testify on behalf of a defendant at any pretrial hearing, the defendant shall show good cause at a contradictory hearing with the district attorney why the subpoena should be issued. Willful disregard of the rights of victims and witnesses as provided in this Paragraph may be punishable as contempt of court.D. The failure to comply with the provisions of this Section shall not affect the admissibility of any evidence in a civil or criminal proceeding, nor shall any sentence, plea, conviction, or other final disposition be invalidated due to the failure to comply with the provisions of this Section. Nothing in this Section shall be construed as creating a cause of action by or on behalf of any person for an award of costs or attorney fees, for the appointment of counsel for a victim, or for any cause of action for compensation or damages against the state of Louisiana, a political subdivision, a public agency, or a court, or any officer, employee, or agent thereof. Nothing in this Section precludes filing for a writ of mandamus as provided in the Code of Civil Procedure to compel the performance of a ministerial duty required by law.Added by Acts 2017, No. 337,s. 1, eff. 8/1/2017.