New law grants amnesty for those reporting sexual assault crimes

In an effort to make sexual assault survivors and witnesses more comfortable coming forward with information about the crimes, a law now grants amnesty to students who report a sexual assault that happened in the context of another illegal activity, like underage drinking.

The law, which goes into effect Sept. 1, is receiving support and praise from local organizations.

Martha Garcia Opersteny, executive director of the Sexual Assault Resource Center in the Brazos Valley, says this law signals to survivors that it's okay to speak out.

"We have a great working relationship with local law enforcement on these cases," said Opersteny. "And this has never really been a problem. But this law serves as a gesture to survivors who may otherwise have been scared to come forward."