Can you be arrested for someone accusing you of sexually abusing them over 2 years ago?

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Can you be arrested for someone accusing you of sexually abusing them over 2 years ago?

I had a family member that has been gone for more then 2 years. They have now come back and made out a police report stating that someone in my family sexually abused them from the age of 2 until 20. We have not heard from the police. Is this because they do not believe her? How long do they have to question us?

Asked on May 15, 2012 under Criminal Law, New York

Answers:

Richard Southard / Law Office of Richard Southard

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If the charges are felonies, the police have five years from the time they turn 18 to make an arrest.  If there are allegations of forcible rape then there is no statute of limitation in NY.  There can be any number of reasons why the police are proceeding slowly. It's best not to speculate.  Your other option is to hire an attorney and have them speak to the police and find out what's going on.

Kevin Bessant / Law Office of Kevin Bessant & Associates

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

There is no statue of limitations that prevents a person from making a police report, however there is a statue of limitations that prevents the prosecutor from filing criminal charges. These limitations are often longer than two years, which means you could still be criminally charged if probable cause exists to issue a warrant. If you have yet to hear from the police, and no warrants have issued, then you should be in the clear. If not then you need to contact a criminal defense attorney as these are serious charges. 


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