HCS HB 27, 219, 321 & 412 -- CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN
COMMITTEE ACTION: Voted "do pass" by the Committee on Criminal
Law by a vote of 15 to 0.
The substitute creates the crime of sexual misconduct involving
a child. A person commits this crime if the person knowingly
exposes the person's genitals to a child less than 14 in a way
that would cause a reasonable adult to believe the conduct would
likely cause alarm to a child less than 14; or for the purpose
of arousing or gratifying the sexual desire of any person; or
coerces a child less than 14 to expose the child's genitals for
the purpose of arousing or gratifying the sexual desire of any
person. A person also commits the crime if the person engages
in a sexual act in the presence of a child less than 14, knowing
that the child may see the sexual act.
The crime of sexual misconduct involving a child is a class D
felony. Subsequent violations are a class C felony.
The substitute also enhances the penalties for crimes that
result in the death of a child. The substitute makes the crimes
of endangering the welfare of a child in the first or second
degree and of child abuse that results in the death of a child,
class A felonies.
This substitute requires local law enforcement to provide to any
person upon request a complete list of the names, addresses, and
criminal convictions of each sexual offender registered within
FISCAL NOTE: Partial Estimated Net Effect on General Revenue
Fund is Unknown for FY 1998, FY 1999, and FY 2000.
PROPONENTS: Supporters say that the legislation closes
loopholes in cases of indecent exposure involving children that
are difficult to prosecute. In addition, the legislation
increases criminal penalties in cases where a child is abused or
neglected and the abuse or neglect results in the death of the
child. Finally, the legislation provides public access to the
criminal records of registered sexual offenders that reside in
Testifying for the bill were Representatives Hartzler (124), May
(108), Lograsso, and Luetkenhaus; Harrisonville Police
Department; Belton Police Department; Missouri Peace Officers
Association; Missouri Highway Patrol; and Jackson County
OPPONENTS: There was no opposition voiced to the committee.
Michael Warrick, Research Analyst