Bill Cosby-inspired legislation signed into law by California governor

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A bill partially inspired by the sexual assault allegations against scandal-plagued comedian Bill Cosby was signed into law on Wednesday by California Gov. Jerry Brown.

The law, titled SB 813, will eliminate the statute of limitations for rape and sexual assault in the state.

A number of Cosby's accusers testified before the California Legislature to support the bill, dubbed the Justice for Victims Act, before it made its way to Brown's desk.

The statute of limitations for felony sex crimes in California has typically been 10 years.

Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents those accusers and met with key Brown advisors about the bill, hailed Brown's decision to sign the bill into law.

RELATED: See who accused Cosby of assault

25 PHOTOS
List of Accusers Against Bill Cosby
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List of Accusers Against Bill Cosby

Linda Ridgeway Whitedeer

Date of alleged assault: Early 1970's
Date of accusation: August 12, 2015

(Photo by MARK RALSTON via AFP/Getty Images)

Former actress Eden Tirl

Date of alleged assault: Early 1970's
Date of accusation: August 12, 2015

(Photo by MARK RALSTON via AFP/Getty Images)

Colleen Hughes

Date of alleged assault: Early 1970's
Date of accusation: August 12, 2015

(Photo by MARK RALSTON via AFP/Getty Images)

Lise-Lotte Lublin

Date of alleged assault: 1989
Date of accusation: February 12, 2015 

(Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Linda Brown

Date of alleged assault: 1969
Date of accusation: February 12, 2015 i. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Katherine McKee

Date of alleged incident: 1970s
Date of accusation: Dec. 22, 2014

(NY Daily News)

"Lisa"

Date of alleged incident: 1988
Date of accusation: Dec. 19, 2014

(Dr.Phil)

Beverly Johnson

Date of alleged incident: mid-’80s
Date of accusation: Dec. 11, 2014

(Getty)

Jewel Allison

Date of Alleged Assault – late 1980s
Date of Accusation – Nov. 24, 2014

(Photo by Debbie Egan-Chin/NY Daily News via Getty Images)

Linda Joy Traitz

Date of Alleged Assault – 1970s
Date of Accusation – Nov. 22, 2014

(Facebook)

Angela Leslie

Date of Alleged Assault – 1992
Date of Accusation– Nov. 21, 2014

(Facebook)

Victoria Valentino

Date of Alleged Assault – 1970
Date of Accusation – Nov. 21, 2014

(Photo by Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Louisa Moritz

Date of Alleged Assault – 1971
Date of Accusation – Nov. 20, 2014

(Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)

Michelle Hurd

Date of Alleged Assault – mid 1990s
Date of Accusation – Nov. 20, 2014

(Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)

Barbara Bowman

Date of Alleged Assault – 1986
Date of Accusation – Nov. 13, 2014

(Getty)

Marcella Tate

Date of Alleged Assault – 1975
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Joan Tarshis

Date of Alleged Assault – 1969
Date of Accusation – 2014

(Matt Moyer For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Margie Shapiro 

Date of Alleged Assault – Early 1970's
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Lynn Neal

Date of Alleged Assault – 1980's
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Sammie Mays

Date of Alleged Assault – Mid 1980's
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

Linda Kirkpatrick

Date of Alleged Assault – 1981
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Janice Baker Kinney

Date of Alleged Assault – 1982
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Kacey

Date of Alleged Assault – Early 1990's
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Autumn Burns

Date of Alleged Assault – 1970
Date of Accusation – 2015

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

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"The passage of this new law means that the courthouse doors will no longer be slammed shut in the face of rape victims," Allred said. "It puts sexual predators on notice that the passage of time may no longer protect them from serious criminal consequences for their acts of sexual violence."

While the law will not be retroactive, Allred said, "it is an important victory. We hope that this will send a message to other states to follow California's lead and provide much needed justice for victims."

In January, the Los Angeles County District Attorney declined to pursue charges against Cosby stemming from a sexual assault allegation, citing the statute of limitations. In that case, the accuser claimed that Cosby took her to a Hollywood jazz club in 1965 when she was 17 years old and bought her alcoholic beverages. The accuser had claimed that Cosby then took her to a private residence and forced her to have intercourse with him.

Cosby has been accused of rape or sexual assault by dozens of women.The comedian has denied the allegations, and in some cases has sued his accusers.

The former "Cosby Show" star has been slapped with multiple lawsuits in the wake of the scandal. He has also been charged with felony sexual assault stemming from accusations made by former Temple University employee Andrea Constand, who alleges that Cosby assaulted her in 2004.


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