Daily Archives: October 7, 2014

Houston police file charges against 19 people while clearing backlog of rape kits

GATC and tubeHOUSTON — A $4.4 million effort to test rape kits dating back to 1987 by the city of Houston has produced more than 1,000 DNA databank matches and charges against 19 people.
The Houston Chronicle reports 10 of those suspects have been arrested for the first time. Police officials gathered with politicians at City Hall on Monday to celebrate a task force of more than 40 officers who have worked to clear the nearly three-decade old backlog.

Twice violated

sole DNAThanks to a federal consent decree designed to improve police practices, the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) has virtually eliminated its backlog of untested sexual assault DNA collection kits. NOPD accomplished this by submitting the data to the FBI’s nationwide database. The Louisiana State Police completed a similarly massive undertaking by reducing its backlog in 2008, submitting more than 30,000 statewide DNA samples to the database. These steps represent important milestones for both agencies, but much more remains to be done to give rape victims confidence that the government is doing all it can to prosecute sex crimes.

Metro Police working to get through rape kit backlog

Backlog of sexual assault kitsLAS VEGAS — Metro Police say they have never delayed or dropped a criminal case because of a back-log of un-tested rape kits.
Metro’s response comes after a national advocacy group released data that shows only about 16 percent of the rape kits held by Metro have been tested for DNA.

Expansion of Oklahoma DNA Database To Be Studied

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Oklahoma lawmakers have scheduled a study on legislation that would require persons accused of crimes to provide samples of their DNA.
Blue and black helixDefendants convicted of certain crimes in the state are already required to provide DNA samples to law enforcement authorities to determine if they can be linked to unsolved crimes. But Rep. Lee Denney of Cushing says she wants authorities to be able to secure DNA samples earlier in the criminal justice process.