Nevada to Get $5.6 Million to Clear Backlog of Untested Rape Kits
Nevada agencies are getting about $5.6 million to start processing a backlog of more than 7,500 untested rape kits.
Attorney General Adam Laxalt announced Thursday that Nevada would get up to $2 million from the White House and the New York City prosecutor's office. His office also plans to apply $1.7 million it received in a settlement toward the cause, and Las Vegas police announced they were getting $2 million of their own.
Rape kits contain evidence and biological specimens collected from people who say they were sexually assaulted. But a lack of resources means many remain untested, and cases remain unsolved.
Laxalt said the money will ensure criminals are brought to justice and will assure sexual assault survivors that the state is invested in solving their cases.
“As of this month, more than 7,500 rape kits in Nevada remain untested, preventing law enforcement from apprehending criminals and deterring future serial crimes,” said Laxalt. “These funds should not only speak to survivors, assuring them that this state is invested in securing their deserved justice, but to law enforcement agents, who can now begin to solve related crimes. Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Sheriff Lombardo and I were committed from our new tenures to addressing this backlog, and thanks to the dedication of our offices, we are now able to take this next step in propelling Nevada’s law enforcement communities to take a victim-centered approach to justice.”
(The Associated Press also contributed to this report.)