Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 1335

       S.D. 2




Honorable Donna Mercado Kim

President of the Senate

Twenty-Eighth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2015

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Judiciary and Labor, to which was referred S.B. No. 1335, S.D. 1, entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to define "person in custody", as used in the offense of sexual assault in the third degree, to mean a person who is stopped by or under the control of a law enforcement officer for official purposes, including but not limited to a person stopped by a law enforcement officer for a traffic stop or providing any identification, license, or registration pursuant to a traffic stop.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Public Safety.


     Your Committee finds that there was a recent incident in which a Honolulu police officer was indicted on a third-degree sexual assault charge for knowingly subjecting a teenage girl in custody, as a result of a traffic stop, to sexual contact.  However, the indictment against the officer was dismissed with prejudice due to the court's interpretation of "custody" in section 707-732, Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS).  This measure seeks to provide the courts with clarification on how "custody" is to be interpreted under section 707-732, HRS.  Implementation of this measure will further public safety by prohibiting law enforcement officers from knowingly subjecting a person in custody to sexual contact, including during traffic stops.


     Your Committee has amended this measure by:


     (1)  Amending the offense of sexual assault in the second degree to add a definition of "person in custody" as this offense also uses the term "person in custody";


     (2)  Inserting an effective date of January 7, 2059, to encourage further discussion; and


     (3)  Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary and Labor that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1335, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1335, S.D. 2.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary and Labor,