Kathleen Kane is the first female Democratic candidate ever to be elected as the Pennsylvania Attorney General, beating out Republican candidate David Freed.
Kane won with 56.1 percent of votes compared to Freeds 41.6 percent with 96.94 percent of precincts reporting at 12:40 a.m., according to the Pennsylvania Department of State website.
Kane said that she was proud of the people who came out to vote in such high numbers and that she is proud to serve Pennsylvania.
“[The election] is a testament to the people of Pennsylvania,” Kane said. “The people of Pennsylvania got the message that we need an independent prosecutor, which I will serve them as.”
Freed could not be reached for comment by press time Tuesday.
Once in office, Kane said she will launch a full investigation into how it took three years for prosecutors to bring charges to light in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case.
Sandusky was convicted in June on 45 counts of sexually abusing boys he met through the charity he created, The Second Mile. Sandusky was sentenced in October to serve 30 to 60 years in prison.
Kane said she thought the grand jury investigation into Sandusky took too long, and that the Attorney General’s office should have focused more on getting Sandusky in jail, as previously reported.
After launching the investigation, Kane said she also wants to quickly focus on consumer protection, establishing smarter law enforcement to protect children from gangs and drugs and get a public corruption unit up and running.
Kane, who most recently served as Lackawanna County assistant district attorney, said she wants to have her office focus more on child sex abuse and how it is reported. While a prosecutor, Kane also served in a child abuse/sexual assault unit, as previously reported.
Kane said she wants to make the Attorney General’s office less of a reactionary body and make it more proactive. Kane said she has a four-step process to make the office more proactive.
Eliminating the statute of limitations on child sex abuse, which is currently the age of 50, would be Kane’s first measure taken to make the Attorney General’s office more proactive. Kane said when an act of sexual abuse is committed against a child, it is in effect killing them inside.
Kane also wants to have records of child sex abuse more open across the state. Kane said making the databases more open so various police departments and the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare would enable the departments to act more effectively work together, as previously reported.
The third point of Kane’s plan would be letting people know they should report to both police and the Child Line and Abuse Registry to also help eliminate gaps in coverage of sexual abuse claims.
Training for all state-related university employees on how to both recognize and properly report child sex abuse is Kane’s fourth measure for making the Attorney General’s office more proactive.
Besides child sex abuse, Kane said in a previous interview she also wants to take steps to make sure that resources can be better shared throughout the counties of Pennsylvania, so that the smaller counties that have less police resources have the same opportunities to stop crime as the larger counties do.