Activists push to change reporting age of sex abuse victims

Posted: Updated:
MIDDLETOWN -

The controversial Child Victim's Act was left out of the state budget last weekend amid opposition from the Catholic Church and Senate Republicans.

Current state law caps the timeframe to report sex crimes at 23 – something activists like Lex Filipowski had pushed to change with the Child Victim's Act.

Filipowski considers himself a voice for child sex abuse victims, as a survivor himself who suffered years of molestation by his family’s trusted priest.

The 53-year-old says he was just 7 years old when Father George Boxelaar began sexually abusing him before Mass at Holy Cross Church in Middletown. At the time, he says he went to his parents for help, but they didn't believe him. Filipowski says he suffered in silence until he was 24.

The Child Victim's Act seeks to extend the reporting age to 50 and give all victims, regardless of age, a special one-year window period to come forward.

Critics say the bill would make it impossible for people and employers to defend against decades-old sex abuse claims, and it wasn't included in next year's budget.

"Anyone who votes against the bill or attempts to kill it is basically supporting pedophiles and allowing more children to be victimized in the future,” says Filipowski

The Legislature has until the end of session in June to reconsider the bill for next year.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."