Bill Text: IL SB2081 | 2019-2020 | 101st General Assembly | Introduced


Bill Title: Amends the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963. Creates the Forensic Science Act. Provides that a convicted person may file a petition for relief based on relevant forensic scientific evidence that was not available to be offered at the convicted person's trial or entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendere or that undermines forensic scientific evidence relied upon by the prosecution at trial. Prescribes what shall be included in a petition for relief under the Act. Provides that, upon reviewing a petition, a court shall grant relief to the petitioner if the court finds that, had the forensic scientific evidence been presented at trial or entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendere, there is a reasonable likelihood the petitioner would not have been convicted. Provides that, in making a finding as to whether relevant forensic scientific evidence was not ascertainable through the exercise of reasonable diligence on or before a specific date, the court shall consider whether the relevant forensic scientific evidence has changed since the applicable trial date or dates, or date of entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendere, for a determination made with respect to an original application, or the date on which the original application or a previously considered application, as applicable, was filed, for a determination made with respect to a subsequent application. Effective July 1, 2019.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 2-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-04-12 - Rule 3-9(a) / Re-referred to Assignments [SB2081 Detail]

Download: Illinois-2019-SB2081-Introduced.html


101ST GENERAL ASSEMBLY
State of Illinois
2019 and 2020
SB2081

Introduced 2/15/2019, by Sen. Michael E. Hastings

SYNOPSIS AS INTRODUCED:
New Act

Amends the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963. Creates the Forensic Science Act. Provides that a convicted person may file a petition for relief based on relevant forensic scientific evidence that was not available to be offered at the convicted person's trial or entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendre or that undermines forensic scientific evidence relied upon by the prosecution at trial. Prescribes what shall be included in a petition for relief under the Act. Provides that, upon reviewing a petition, a court shall grant relief to the petitioner if the court finds that, had the forensic scientific evidence been presented at trial or entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendre, there is a reasonable likelihood the petitioner would not have been convicted. Provides that, in making a finding as to whether relevant forensic scientific evidence was not ascertainable through the exercise of reasonable diligence on or before a specific date, the court shall consider whether the relevant forensic scientific evidence has changed since the applicable trial date or dates, or date of entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendre, for a determination made with respect to an original application, or the date on which the original application or a previously considered application, as applicable, was filed, for a determination made with respect to a subsequent application. Effective July 1, 2019.
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A BILL FOR

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1 AN ACT concerning criminal law.
2 Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4 Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Forensic Science Act.
6 Section 5. Definitions.
7 "Forensic science" means the application of scientific or
8technical practices to the recognition, collection, analysis,
9and interpretation of evidence for criminal proceedings.
10 "Forensic scientific evidence" includes: scientific or
11technical knowledge; a testifying forensic analyst's or
12expert's scientific or technical knowledge or opinion; reports
13or testimony offered by experts or forensic analysts;
14scientific standards; and scientific methods or techniques
15upon which the relevant forensic scientific evidence is based.
16 "Scientific knowledge" includes the knowledge of the
17general scientific community and all fields of scientific
18knowledge on which those fields or disciplines rely and is not
19limited to practitioners or proponents of a particular
20scientific or technical field or discipline.
21 Section 10. Applicability of basis for relief.
22 (a) This Act applies to relevant forensic scientific

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1evidence that:
2 (1) was not available to be offered by a convicted
3 person at the convicted person's trial, entry of judgment,
4 plea of guilty, or plea of nolo contendre; or
5 (2) undermines forensic scientific evidence relied
6 upon by the prosecution at trial.
7 (b) A convicted person may file a petition for relief based
8on relevant forensic scientific evidence described in
9subsection (a) of this Section. The petition shall contain:
10 (1) an assertion that the petitioner did not commit the
11 crime for which he was convicted or engage in conduct
12 constituting a lesser included or inchoate offense of the
13 crime for which he or she was convicted, pled guilty, or
14 pled nolo contendre; and
15 (2) specific facts indicating that relevant forensic
16 scientific evidence is currently available and was not
17 available at the time of the convicted person's trial,
18 entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of nolo
19 contendre because the evidence was not ascertainable
20 through the exercise of reasonable diligence by the
21 convicted person before the date of or during the convicted
22 person's trial or prior to entry of judgment, pea of
23 guilty, or plea of nolo contendre.
24 (c) The court shall grant relief to the petitioner if the
25court finds that, had the forensic scientific evidence been
26presented at trial or prior to entry of judgment, plea of

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1guilty, or nolo plea, there is a reasonable likelihood the
2petitioner would not have been convicted.
3 (d) In making a finding as to whether relevant forensic
4scientific evidence was not ascertainable through the exercise
5of reasonable diligence on or before a specific date, the court
6shall consider whether the relevant forensic scientific
7evidence has changed since: (1) the applicable trial date or
8dates, or date of entry of judgment, plea of guilty, or plea of
9nolo contendre, for a determination made with respect to an
10original application; or (2) the date on which the original
11application or a previously considered application, as
12applicable, was filed, for a determination made with respect to
13a subsequent application.
14 (e) This Section does not create additional liabilities,
15beyond those already recognized, for an expert who repudiates
16his or her original opinion provided at a hearing or trial or
17whose opinion has been undermined by later scientific research
18or technological advancements.
19 Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect July 1,
202019.
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