More than 5,000 Oregon Sex Assault Kits Wait for Testing

Oregon State PoliceOregon has over 5,200 sex assaults kits waiting for processing, according to Oregon State Police. The kits date back at least 30 years.

There are many reasons why the kits haven’t been tested. Sometimes, a kit may not be processed if a perpetrator confessed to the crime, making it unnecessary to process the kit to obtain evidence. But many kits may not be processed because the police didn’t have a suspect or had other reasons to think the case would never be prosecuted, so didn’t want to burden an already overworked state crime lab.

Municipal law enforcement officers are now under pressure to dig into the backlog. Officers have to first prioritize the untested kits and are working with victim advocates to design a system. They acknowledge that delay in processing the kits hampers criminal investigation and prosecution of sex assault cases.

“If we have a practice that’s not the best model, we need to change that,” said State Police Superintendent Richard Evans Jr.

“It’s all about making sure we solve as many crimes as we can.”

Other states report that processing the kits have led to arrests of serial criminals, solved crimes in other municipalities and states, and linked recent assaults with earlier ones.

Read more here.

Dumas and Vaughn Attorneys at Law has law offices in Portland, Oregon and serves clients in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and other states.

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