There are 3,482 untested rape kits in Minnesota, the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) announced.
The agency released its most comprehensive look at the rape kit backlog Thursday after Minnesota lawmakers directed law enforcement officials to count the number of untested kits and provide a complete inventory by Dec. 1, 2015, including why the kits haven’t been processed.
This week, we learned that there are at least 10,000 unprocessed sexual assault kits in Florida. The preliminary results are part of an ongoing assessment by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to identify all unprocessed kits in the state. FDLE will complete its statewide assessment next month and then the real work of finding the most expedient way to process these untested kits will begin. However, we must not forget that each one of these kits represents a victim — a person who was violated in the worst possible way.
Madison,WI – Thousands and thousands of rape kits are sitting on shelves in Wisconsin, untested. Meanwhile, more people are going to local hospitals saying they are rape victims.
BURLINGTON, N.C.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Laboratory Corporation of America® Holdings (LabCorp®) (NYSE: LH) announced today that Bode Cellmark Forensics, a member of the LabCorp Specialty Testing Group, has entered into an agreement with the New York County District Attorney’s Office (DANY) that recognizes Bode Cellmark as a preferred forensic laboratory eligible to process untested sexual assault kits for grant recipients of DANY’s Sexual Assault Kit Backlog Elimination Program.
LAS VEGAS, NV – Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt has announced his office will pledge $3.68 million in funding to eliminate Nevada’s backlog of untested sexual assault evidence kits, or “rape kits.”
CLEVELAND, Ohio — The U.S. Department of Justice and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. today announced nearly $80 million in grants to law enforcement agencies across the nation to test rape kits, prosecute cases and support victims.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine’s crime lab has been testing rape kits since 2011 and a team led by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty’s office has handled more than 1,800 investigations resulting in hundreds of indictments and more than 100 convictions.
Here are some things that investigators, prosecutors and advocates in other cities and state might learn from Ohio.
The Kentucky State Police Forensic Laboratories have received a $1.9 million grant for DNA testing on backlogged sexual assault kits.
The grant, from the District Attorney of New York County’s office in Manhattan, will help law enforcement agencies across the state in processing the more than 800 backlogged kits, some of which have been sitting in police storage facilities for years.
Until this year, Portland police did not routinely present DNA evidence obtained from all rape cases to the state crime lab.
But as detectives struggled to solve the Dec. 13 rape and killing of 14-year-old Melissa Bittler and pored through old sexual assault cases, they found more than 1,000 rape kits that never had been submitted and recognized a need for new protocol.
Attorney General Mark Herring and Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran announced today that the Commonwealth of Virginia has received a $1.4 million grant to conduct DNA testing and analyze more than 2,000 untested Physical Evidence Recovery Kits (PERKs) associated with sexual assaults in Virginia.
“This funding will provide us the financial wherewithal to screen and test these things for DNA and potentially put those in our DNA database,” said Kermit Channell, Executive Director of the Arkansas State Crime Lab.
ATLANTA (WXIA) — The GBI will get nearly two million dollars to eliminate a backlog of untested rape kits, officials said Thursday. The grant could solve a nagging problem which left rape cases in limbo — often for years — because evidence hadn’t been tested and analyzed.
Law enforcement agencies and prosecutors in Oregon received nearly $4 million in grant funding Thursday to test DNA in sexual assault kits that were never sent to the state crime lab for analysis.
The grants were among more than $70 million awarded in 26 states through two separate programs run by the U.S. Bureau of Justice and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.
TAMPA, Fla. – Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi says thousands of untested rape kits are sitting in the evidence rooms of law enforcement agencies across the state, though the exact number is anybody’s guess.
During a news conference Wednesday at the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay, Bondi called for more funding in the next state budget to process the sexual assault kits.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is conducting a study on the number of untested kits and will present the findings to the Legislature in January. The state has committed over $300,000 for the study.
WORCESTER – A lingering state backlog of unanalyzed sexual assault testing kits has been reduced to fewer than 500, eight years after the number was pegged at approximately 16,000, state officials said Wednesday.
For years, they’ve been collecting dust — tens of thousands of evidence kits that could lead police to serial rapists but have never been tested.
But now, almost $80 million is being earmarked to help clear the massive backlog and hopefully get justice for sexual assault survivors.