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Editorial: WV sexual assault victims have the right to be heard

The reasons for silence are as often as obvious as they are unknown.

One of them certainly must be that it helps soothe sorrow.

Still another would have to be that it’s a response to anger.

And for some, the virtual silence attached to sexual assault crimes silences justice.

But in recent years, that has begun to change, and those changes were never more apparent in West Virginia than in the state Senate last week.

On the same day a doctor was being sentenced to 175 years in prison in Michigan for hundreds of sex crimes, 33 of our state’s lawmakers were advancing a Sexual Assault Victim’s Bill of Rights.

Senate Bill 39 — sponsored by Sen. Mike Woefel, D-Cabell — provides for eight rights for sexual assault victims that should go a long way toward ending how this grossly underreported crime is often shelved. …

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