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A new bill introduced in New Mexico would legally require rape victims to carry their pregnancies to full term in order to use the fetus as evidence in a sexual assault trial.
House Bill 206, introduced by state Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R), would charge a rape victim who aborted or ended her pregnancy with a third-degree felony for “tampering with evidence.”
Currently in New Mexico, those charged with three-degree felonies could face a sentence of up to three years in prison.
Brown released in a statement on Jan. 24 that she introduced the bil in hopes of strengthening laws to deter sex offenders. She believes that the goal of the bill is to punish the person who commits incest or rape and then procures or faciliatates an abortion to destroy the evidence of the crime.
However, Pat Davis of ProgressNow New Mexico, a progressive nonprofit group, opposes the bill.
“The bill turns victims of rape and incest into felons and forces them to become incubators of evidence for the state,” he said.
The bill though is unlikely to pass, as Democrats currently have a majority in both chambers of New Mexico’s State legislature.