Sep 30 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), John Cornyn (R-TX), and Amy Klobuchar (MN), introduced the Patrick Leahy and Orrin G. Hatch Justice For All Reauthorization Act of 2022. The Justice for All Act was originally enacted in 2004 as a groundbreaking piece of bipartisan criminal justice legislation.

The programs authorized under the Justice for All Act improve forensic science and access to justice, increase the fairness and accuracy of the criminal legal system, and enhance protections for crime victims. This reauthorization notably expands the opportunities to address wrongful convictions. The bill codifies the more than 10-year-old Wrongful Conviction Review program to provide grants for high quality investigations and representation in post-conviction claims of innocence. The bill also creates a pilot conviction integrity review grant program within prosecutors’ offices. These programs would support the work North Carolina crime labs do in support of victims.

 “Crime victims deserve full protection and every resource that is available to them,” said Senator Tillis. “This legislation protects victims by funding rape kit tracking, enhancing oversight of DOJ administration of rape kit funding, preventing law enforcement from using victim rape kit DNA for other purposes, and requiring updated information on the development of rapid DNA technology. I am proud to introduce this legislation with my colleagues so victims will have more rights, protections, and enhanced support. I’m especially thankful that this bill would support the outstanding work done by North Carolina’s crime labs to support victims. I’ve long been a leader on victims’ rights issues and am glad my colleagues are working with me to support the work of North Carolina’s crime labs.”