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More Than 3,000 Rape Kits Go Untested In Kentucky

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Posted at 2:26 PM, Sep 21, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-22 23:32:41-04

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) -- A new report from the state auditor said more than 3,000 rape kits across Kentucky have never been tested, with some languishing in evidence lockers for more than 40 years.

Rape kits have contained physical evidence from victims collected in the hours after a sexual assault. Testing the kits has helped identify DNA and other evidence that can help authorities identify and prosecute suspects.

Auditor Adam Edelen said the number of kits submitted to the Kentucky State Police Forensic Laboratory has been increasing, but the police have not made testing them a priority. State law has not required police departments to submit kits for testing. And 61 percent of hospital emergency rooms that responded to the survey said they do not have nurses trained to perform the exams.

Edelen recommended state law and police policy changes to address the backlog. 

(Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)