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Attorney General DeWine Announces 12,000 Rape Kits Tested as Part of Special Initiative


(COLUMBUS, Ohio)— Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced today that forensic scientists with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) have now conducted DNA testing on 12,000 rape kits as part of a special initiative to secure justice for victims of sexual assault in Ohio.

The 12,000 kits were analyzed as part of Attorney General DeWine's Sexual Assault Kit (SAK) Testing Initiative. Attorney General DeWine launched the initiative in 2011 after learning that many law enforcement agencies across the state were in possession of rape kits that had never been sent to a DNA lab for testing.  He then asked law enforcement officials to voluntarily send their kits to BCI for DNA testing at no cost to them.

In total, authorities from 294 law enforcement agencies sent 13,931 rape kits to BCI for testing as part of the special initiative.  

As of January 1, 2017, the testing has led to 4,367 hits in the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS), linking crimes to offenders, identifying serial rapists, and giving law enforcement agencies critical evidence to help solve brutal attacks.

In Cuyahoga County alone, hundreds of defendants have been indicted following DNA testing conducted as part of the effort.

To ensure the timely analysis of the thousands of kits submitted as part of the SAK Testing Initiative, Attorney General DeWine hired 10 additional forensic scientists to test the older kits as quickly as possible, without slowing down the testing of the more than 11,630 rape kits associated with recent crimes tested by BCI as part of their regular casework since 2011.

Senate Bill 316, which went into effect on March 23, 2015, required law enforcement to submit any remaining older kits to a crime laboratory within one year.  Of the nearly 14,000 kits submitted to BCI as part of the SAK Testing Initiative, 4,601 were submitted after the law went into effect. The law also requires that all newly collected rape kits be submitted to a crime lab within 30 days after law enforcement determines a crime has been committed.


Media Contacts

Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Jill Del Greco: 614-466-3840

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