OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Oklahoma Senate has passed legislation that would expand Oklahoma's Child Abuse Response Team program for investigating child abuse.
Senators voted 45-0 for the measure Wednesday and sent it to the state House for debate and a vote.
First launched in 2005, the program uses investigators who are highly trained in investigating child abuse to oversee and investigate child abuse investigations. The specialized skills of program investigators include forensic interviews of children and case development for prosecution.
In 2011, there were more than 8,000 confirmed cases of child abuse and neglect in Oklahoma, including children who had been physically abused and sexually assaulted. But the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation only has two investigators that are assigned to the program for the entire state.
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