Thousands of Rape Kits Untested in U.S.

Authorities have neglected to test at least 70,000 rape kits across more than 1,000 police agencies, a USA Today report published Thursday found. In collaboration with more than 75 Gannett newspapers and Tegna TV stations, the report discovered no written guidelines for processing sex-crime evidence in most states and law-enforcement agencies, allowing rape kits to sit instead of being uploaded to state and national databases. At least 50 major law-enforcement agencies had never taken inventory of the number of untested rape kits in their evidence rooms. The Justice Department is also failing to comply with a 2013 law aimed at testing and processing more rape kits. The inventory report covered just 1,000 of the nation’s 18,000 police departments, which indicates the number of untested kits could be much higher.