The law in California now puts civilian authorities in charge of military sexual assault cases. 

Democrat State Senator Alex Padilla says the governor's signature on his bill sets California apart from other states in the nation.

"California has now taken the formal step of separating investigation and prosecution of sexual assault in the military from the chain of command," he said. 

Padilla's law not only requires cases involving the sexual assault of a California Military Department service member be subject to the jurisdiction of local civilian authorities, it also eliminates the statute of limitation in such cases.

Finally, the new law would also require the department to report annually to the governor and the Legislature sexual assault statistics.