The Sexual Assault Team handles the Statutory Rape Vertical Prosecution Grant funded by the State of California, and the Child Abuse Vertical Prosecution Grant funded by the State of California, as well as prosecuting felony violations of the sex registration laws, and prosecutions of sexual assaults on adult and child victims. Each year the sexual assault team handles over five hundred felony sexual assault cases and over one hundred and fifty felony violations of the sex registration laws. Many of the cases prosecuted by the Sexual Assault Team carry potential life sentences mandated by the "One Strike" laws that apply to aggravated circumstances such as multiple victims, kidnapping and burglary.
Victims of sexual assault are guaranteed anonymity throughout the court process and victim’s address is protected by state law from disclosure, California Penal Code Sections 293 and 293.5. The Sexual Assault Team also obtains search warrants of defendants’ blood to test for HIV on behalf of sexual assault victims where there is probable cause to believe that there was an exchange of bodily fluids, California Penal Code Section 1524.1. The local health department will inform the victim of the result in a medically confidential manner and provide professional counseling, California Penal Code Section 1524.1(f)(g)(h).
The Sexual Assault Team with the assistance of a full time paralegal also obtain DNA samples from all felony sex offenders for inclusion in the State of California Database pursuant to California Penal Code Sections 295 et. seq. Santa Clara County has achieved a compliance rate for DNA sampling in excess of ninety-nine percent.
In appropriate cases the Sexual Assault Team can present the testimony of a child witness and disabled victims via closed circuit television equipment obtained pursuant to a federal grant.
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