Bar Bulletin

Bar Bulletin

Childhood Sexual Abuse and the Statute of Limitations

June 2017 Bar Bulletin

The Law behind the news

By Gene Barton

The new allegations of childhood sexual abuse levied against Seattle Mayor Ed Murray that forced him to end his bid for reelection raise an interesting legal question regarding the statute of limitations for such alleged offenses.

In the extant matter, the initial accuser is a 46-year-old man who claims that Murray sexually abused him when he was a 15-year-old high school dropout, i.e., some 31 years ago and well beyond any typical statute of limitations. However, as noted in one of the initial articles in The Seattle Times, “For civil cases, victims of child sex abuse are...

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