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Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) GranteeDallas County (Texas)

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SAKI grant funds have helped Dallas County achieve their goals of testing approximately 4,000 sexual assault kits (SAKs); taking a victim-centered approach toward victim notification that includes immediate advocacy support from the police department, district attorney's office, and local crisis centers; investigating and prosecuting to the fullest extent any viable cases that are the result of SAK testing; and using lessons learned from their SAKI project to educate and provide support to other Dallas County agencies.

Funded in 2015, Dallas County has used SAKI funding to achieve several goals and milestones:

  • The SAKI team indicted four homicide-related sexual assault cases in 2017 and one in 2018, and since 2018, 57 SAKI cases have been indicted.
  • The cases prosecuted to final disposition have totaled 125 years plus 6 life sentences.
  • Forty-six serial sexual offenders have been identified who have victimized a total of 143 women and children.
  • A total of 387 women or children who have been sexually victimized have been identified.
  • In 2020 a serial sexual offender with Dallas cases from the 1980's was identified using forensic genetic genealogy analysis, the first case of its kind to be solved in this manner in Dallas County.

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

Dallas County Funding

Year Amount Purpose Area
FY2015 $1,599,170 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits
FY2016 - supplemental award $1,000,000 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits
FY2018 $1,830,000 Investigation and Prosecution of Cold Case Sexual Assaults

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To learn more about Dallas County's progress, read the following news and events.

Dallas County (Texas) Grantee Site Representatives

News and Events

Serial killer gets three life sentences after he pleaded guilty to murder
Dallas County District Attorney's Office, May 13, 2021
A 43-year-old serial killer who fled to Mexico in 2003 was sentenced Thursday to life in prison after he pleaded guilty to murder charges for the strangulations of three women thanks to the SAKI unit in Dallas County Texas.

A serial killing suspect is returned to Dallas after nearly 17 years on the run
Faith Karimi, CNN, Jan 10, 2020
A serial killing suspect charged in the deaths of three women has been arrested and returned to Dallas after nearly 17 years on the run.

Sex offender arrested on murder charge after Highland Park victim dies 30 years later
Tasha Tsiaperas, Dallas News, Jun 13, 2018
DNA testing funded by SAKI leads to the arrest of a serial sexual offender for the rape and strangulation of a Dallas woman.

Serial rape suspect gets 40 years in prison after backlogged rape kits tested
Tasha Tsiaperas, Dallas News, Sep 1, 2017
A Dallas man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for the rape of a woman over a decade ago. He has also been previously accused and convicted in at least 4 other rapes. To learn more about the positive work Dallas is doing to put these criminals behind bars, read the full article.

Dallas Man jailed on new rape charge after statute of limitations expired on old case
Tasha Tsiaperas, Dallas News, Aug 10, 2017
Lee Marvin Banks has been arrested for a more recent rape, and has exonerated an innocent man who spent 12 years in jail for a rape he did not commit.

Years after her mom was killed beside her playpen, Dallas woman finds justice through Facebook
Tasha Tsiaperas, Dallas News, May 30, 2017
Thanks to the efforts of a family and SAKI funds, a woman finds justice for her mother’s rapist and murder. Victor Serrano was apprehended and charged for the 1996 murder and rape of Manuela Dominquez. To learn more about the efforts in Dallas, read the full article.

Dallas man gets life after cold case rape kit testing program leads to ID
Tanya Eiserer, WFAA, Mar 3, 2017
A Dallas man was convicted to life in prison after being linked to five sexual assault cases since 2008. This is the first conviction resulting from Dallas efforts to test evidence from unsubmitted rape kits. “I’m sure he thought that no one would ever believe them, but ladies and gentleman of the jury you can believe them,” prosecutor Amy Derrick said. Read the full story.

Rape survivor, exoneree credit testing of old DNA samples with solving cases
Naheed Rajwani, Dallas News, Dec 15, 2016
Victims of rape and unlawful imprisonment gathered together in support of a bill that would renew the federal program that gives law enforcement agencies funding to test backlogged sexual assault kits. This bill would allow Dallas, Texas police to test SAKs that were collected from 1996 to 2011. Officials noted the importance in testing SAKs, especially to catch serial perpetrators. To learn more, read the full article.

Dallas police crack mystery of woman who was raped, strangled 24 years ago
Tasha Tsiaperas, Dallas News, Nov 29, 2016
For 24 years, Dallas, Texas police had no answers as to who was responsible for the rape and murder of Shirley Baker Muhammad. Now, newly tested DNA evidence points to a 52-year-old man in prison for another victim’s rape. This is the first success from Dallas’ newly formed cold case unit within the Dallas Police Department. The cold case unit comprises a former homicide detective, two former robbery detectives, and a former crime scene analyst. The unit has been cataloging cases, many of which fall between 1995 and 2005, when crime scene analysts started keeping DNA evidence. More DNA hits are forthcoming. To learn more, read the full article.

Dallas County awarded $1,000,000 federal grant for sexual assault kit testing
U.S. Attorney’s Office, Oct 6, 2016
Dallas County, Texas has been awarded $1 million in grant funding to support a community-based approach to inventory and test backlogged, unsubmitted sexual assault kits. The funding also allows agencies to hire and assign personnel to investigate cold cases based on the results of testing the kits.

Dallas County DA's office gets $1.5 million grant to handle rape kit backlog
Dallas Morning News, Sep 1, 2015

Grant funds expansion of Dallas DA Sexual Assault Unit
WFFA, Jun 24, 2015

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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.

This Web site is funded in whole or in part through a grant from the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. Neither the U.S. Department of Justice nor any of its components operate, control, are responsible for, or necessarily endorse, this Web site (including, without limitation, its content, technical infrastructure, and policies, and any services or tools provided).

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