3,500 rape kits are overdue for analysis in Alaska

ANCHORAGE (KTUU) — A backlog of nearly 3,500 completed sexual assault evidence kits could be resolved in two years with $2.75 million added to the state’s capital budget by the Alaska Legislature before it adjourned earlier this month.
The evidence in the test kits — tissue swabs, clothing, hair, skin, blood — were gathered by investigators around Alaska according to state Department of Public Safety officials. But the kits remained in the custody of troopers and local departments — 53 percent are held by Anchorage police. The non-analyzed kits came off the state’s priority list because they weren’t needed to prosecute criminals, or there wasn’t the money budgeted to run the tests.