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SAKI Sexual Assault Kit Testing Initiative Grant

Attorney General Herring and the Department Forensic Science secured a $1.4 million grant for an ongoing project to test more than 2,000 untested Physical Evidence Recovery Kits (PERKs). A new change in state law will ensure that kits collected from July 1, 2016 are properly submitted to DFS for analysis. The Sexual Assault Kit Testing Initiative Grant provides funding for the analysis of any untested kits that were collected in the gap between 2014 and the time the new law went into effect.

 

The SAKI grant will also allow the Department of Forensic Science to implement a new PERK tracking system. With this system, PERKs will be tracked at each step in the process, including their distribution as uncollected kits to the collection sites (e.g., hospitals) through collection, transfer to law enforcement, submission to the laboratory for analysis, and return to the law enforcement agency for storage.  All agencies handling kits will be granted access in order to update the status of each kit, and victims may use the system to check the status of the analysis of their kits. By tracking the status of kits entered into the system, DFS will be able to notify stakeholders when collected kits have not been appropriately submitted for analysis.

 

"Testing these kits is so important to help identify predators and to make connections between unsolved crimes, but it's also really important to show survivors that the Commonwealth stands with them and will help them pursue justice as part of their healing process," said Attorney General Mark Herring. "This is a big project, but we're going to see it through."

 

Press releases:

Poster Announcing SAKI Grant

Letter from Attorney General Herring to law enforcement agencies

Virginia Attorney General SAKI Handbook

National SAKI Website

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