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Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) GranteeCharlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (North Carolina)

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In FY2016, SAKI awarded the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) a $1.1-million grant, which they used to submit 300 sexual assault kits (SAKs) to a private laboratory for testing and update their current property/laboratory management information system. CMPD also used the funds to designate three full-time positions (a DNA criminalist, sexual assault advocate, and site coordinator) and two part-time police officers.

CMPD received an additional $837,342 in funding in FY2017, which ran through the end of FY2020 (September 30, 2020). Part of the additional funding was used to send more than 500 partially tested SAKs to an accredited laboratory and to hire a former assistant district attorney to help prepare the cases for prosecution.

In FY2018, CMPD received their third SAKI grant of $452,637 to begin collecting lawfully owed DNA to help populate the Combined DNA Index System. This grant funded a census of lawfully owed DNA in North Carolina, a site coordinator position for this specific award, and a DNA collection agent position. Though CMPD holds the grant, they are collecting lawfully owed DNA for the entire state of North Carolina in partnership with other agencies.

CMPD received $1,494,054 in their fourth SAKI grant, which was awarded in FY2019. These funds will be used to maintain project components developed in their FY2016 and FY2017 grants. CMPD will also be outsourcing the testing of secondary evidence in cases in which SAK testing did not provide probative results.

In FY2020, CMPD received an additional $587,891 in SAKI funding to continue work from their previous SAKI awards—including maintaining their multidisciplinary working group and other key project components. The funding will also be utilized to outsource DNA samples for forensic genetic genealogy testing, as well as to hire several part-time roles—including a criminalist to review sexual assault cold cases, a detective, and an assistant district attorney.

For more information on the specific SAKI awards for this site, see the table below.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Funding

Year Amount Purpose Area
FY2016 $1,125,606 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits
FY2017 $837,342 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits
FY2018 $452,637 Expansion of DNA Databases to Assist with Sexual Assault Investigations and Prosecutions: Collection of Lawfully Owed DNA from Convicted Offenders and Arrestee DNA Collections
FY2019 $1,494,054 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits
FY2020 $587,891 Investigation and Prosecution of Cold Case Sexual Assaults

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News and Events

'Bound and sexually assaulted': Charlotte cold case cleared through DNA after nearly 30 years, police say
Fox 46 Charlotte, Dec 18, 2019
A man is facing several charges including second-degree rape and kidnapping in connection to a sexual assault that occurred in the 1990s in southeast Charlotte, according to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police.

Dead man charged in cold-case sex assault near Ballantyne in south Charlotte, cops say
Joe Marusak, Charlotte Observer, Dec 7, 2019
Police on Friday said they charged a convict who died in 2014 in connection with the 1993 sexual assault of a woman near Ballantyne in south Charlotte based on new DNA testing.

S.C. man arrested, accused of attempting to rape 83-year-old in 1991 Charlotte cold case
WBTV Web Staff, WBTV, Oct 24, 2019
DNA from a previously unsubmitted sexual assault kit linked man to sexual assault from 1991.

Man charged in 2006 armed sexual assault of woman walking home in Charlotte
WBTV Web Staff, WBTV, Aug 30, 2019
DNA evidence linked man to cold case sexual assault.

1995 COLD CASE: Woman feels free after rapist sentenced to prison
Glenn Counts, WSOC TV, Aug 16, 2019
A DNA hit led to Christopher McNear’s arrest and conviction. He was sentenced to 16 to 21 years in prison.

Safety Matters- SAKI
WSGE Radio, Jul 8, 2019
Charlotte SAKI Site Coordinator and Cold Case Detective discuss the importance of SAKI and what they are doing with thier grant.

Man charged in connection with second sexual assault cold case from 1994
WBTV, May 30, 2019
CMPD has charged a man for his involvement in a second sexual assault cold case in Charlotte from 1994 after testing a sexual assualt kit that was partially tested previously using antiquated DNA methods.

24 years after a teen was raped near uptown Charlotte, DNA leads to an arrest
Joe Marusak , The Charlotte Observer, Apr 12, 2019
Newly tested DNA evidence from a previously partially tested sexual assault kit led to an arrest of a suspect 24 years after a 16-year-old reported being attacked in Charlotte, NC.

‘Serial rapist’ accused in 1981 Charlotte sex assaults
WIS News 10, Mar 22, 2019
DNA from 2 previously partially tested sexual assault kits from 1981 led to an arrest in Charlotte, NC.

2 women were raped on a Charlotte road in 1992. DNA leads to an arrest, police say
Joe Marusak, The Charlotte Observer, Feb 8, 2019
DNA from two previously partially tested sexual assault kits from 1992 led to the arrest of a man in Charlotte, NC.

DNA Testing Nabs Suspect Sex Offender Linked To Rape Cold Case
Kimberly Johnson, Patch, Nov 29, 2018
DNA evidence from a previously unsubmitted sexual assault kit tested under SAKI funds led to an arrest in a 23 year old cold case in Charlotte, NC.

The Defenders: Cold case unit investigating serial rape case
Michelle Boudin, Mitzi Morris, WCNC, Nov 9, 2018
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's cold case unit, is hopeful that they can use new DNA technology and previously collected DNA evidence to solve a serial rape case that included 17 sexual assaults from 1990 - 1999 in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area.

CMPD cold case unit arrests suspect in 1992 rape case
WSOC TV, Oct 30, 2018
DNA from a previously submitted sexual assault kit led CMPD to arrest a suspect in a case from 1992.

DNA Testing Leads To Arrest Made In 26-Year-Old Sex Assault Case
Kimberly Johnson, Charlotte Patch, Apr 13, 2018
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has made an arrest in a 26-year-old sexual assault case after testing a previously unsubmitted sexual assault kit.

CMPD charges sex offender with raping 2 teen girls in 1990, 1994
Mark Becker, wsoctv.com, Mar 7, 2018
With the help of DNA evidence, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police department arrested a registered sex offender for the rape of two girls in 1990 and 1994.

CMPD to get more resources to solve sex crimes
Joe Bruno, WSOCTV, Feb 9, 2017
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department is making strides to outsource sexual assault kit testing by entering into a new contract with Sorenson Forensics LLC. The funds for this nearly $250,000 contract are provided through the 2016 Sexual Assault Kit Initiative grant from the Department of Justice. Read the full story to learn more.

CMPD Making Strides on Backlog of Untested Rape Kits
Medium, Jan 24, 2017
In 2014, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department began inventorying unsubmitted sexual assault kits. During this process, they discovered 1,000 SAKs and that they needed a better way of tracking these kits. So far results have been received from 188 kits, 54 of which yielded DNA profiles, and 13 CODIS hits. Find out more about the CMPD survivor-focused approach to case investigation by reading the full story.

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Our Mission

Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative aims to create a coordinated community response that ensures just resolution to sexual assault cases. Through this program, funding is provided to support multidisciplinary community response teams engaged in the comprehensive reform of jurisdictions approaches to sexual assault cases resulting from evidence found in previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits.

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