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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.

Initially funded in FY2015, Dallas County has used four SAKI awards totaling nearly $7 million to achieve several goals and milestones, including the following:

  • Indicted 10 homicide-related sexual assault cases; there have been a total of 144 various indictments since 2015.
  • Prosecuted numerous cases to final disposition, which have totaled 933 years and 15 life sentences.
  • Identified 99 serial sexual offenders who have sexually victimized a total of 440 women and children.
  • Overall identified 744 victims of sexually motivated offenses.
  • Prosecuted and sentenced Roy Gutierrez to life in prison; Gutierrez is responsible for the aggravated sexual assault of at least four women.
  • Traveled to at least eight different states for victim notifications, case investigations, and witness interviews.
  • Completed the investigation and indictment of a 30-year-old homicide sexual assault case.
  • Used Forensic Genetic Genealogy analysis in 2020 to identify a serial sexual offender with Dallas cases from the 1980's; this case is the first of its kind to be solved in this manner in Dallas County.

In FY2021, Dallas County received an additional $2,443,081 in SAKI funding to employ additional personnel—including two investigators, two prosecutors, a victim advocate, and a site coordinator—to ensure survivors' needs are met throughout the notification and criminal justice processes. Dallas County will also be utilizing this funding to maintain their SAKI Task Force, which partners the lead agency (Dallas County Prosecutor's Office) with the Dallas County sexual assault response team. Additionally, funding will be utilized for Forensic Genetic Genealogy, when applicable.

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
FY2021 $2,443,081 Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits

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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

86-year-old man sentenced to 20 years in prison for 1986 Garland murder
Peyton Yager, Fox 4, Mar 12, 2024
An 86-year-old man will likely live out his final years in prison after being captured and convicted for a murder that happened nearly 40 years ago. Advances in DNA technology made it happen.

Aggressive effort to clear Dallas backlog of sexual assault cases continues
Alicia Barrera, NBCDFW, Jan 23, 2024
"The Dallas Police Department and the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office continue their aggressive efforts to clear old sexual assault cases. “We owe it to our survivors, and it's incredibly important to us. So, that's why we really wanted to push to make sure that we are on track,” Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia said."

Man Connected to Two Cold-Case Sexual Assaults Convicted Thanks to Dallas County Sex Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Grant Team
Dallas County District Attorney’s Office, Jan 19, 2024
"A man whose DNA directly tied him to two Dallas County cold-case sexual assaults has been sentenced to 60 years in prison under the leadership of Dallas County Criminal District Attorney John Creuzot. Adrian Cortes was found guilty by a Dallas County jury after just 19 minutes of deliberation. They later sentenced the 61-year-old to 60 years in prison. At the time of trial, 28 years had passed since the initial assault. Despite the passage of time, both victim survivors testified at trial. “Sometimes the system fails survivors of sexual assault. The mission of the SAKI project is to go back and right those wrongs. Every single woman in Dallas County deserves justice for the life-changing tragedy that was forced on them, whether it was perpetrated last night, last decade, or in this case, last century,” said lead prosecutor and member of the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office SAKI Team Deborah Bankhead."

Victims detail how Dallas man linked to 10 sexual assaults trapped them, records show
The Dallas Morning News, Apr 27, 2023
"Court documents in five cases show accounts from women who told police earlier this year how a man assaulted them in Dallas and forced them to perform sexual acts. Police believe the man is 50-year-old Christopher Michael Green. “A lot of these cases are cold because these suspects either don’t have criminal records or were never on anybody’s trail,” said D’Antoni, who is the chief of the sexual assault kit initiative team in the district attorney’s office."

Man gets life sentence for sexual assault after conviction in Dallas cold case
The Dallas Morning News, Jun 13, 2022
"A Kentucky man will spend the rest of his life in prison after Dallas police linked him to a sexual assault case that went cold for more than 15 years, the Dallas County district attorney’s office announced. One night, Jackson threatened the woman with a knife and forced her into a secluded area near the Dallas Convention Center, where he sexually assaulted her multiple times, the DA’s office said. The DNA on the woman’s kit matched that of Jackson, who had two years left on a prison sentence in Kentucky after being convicted of sexually assaulting a woman in 2008. His DNA also was also linked to two other sexual assault cases, but those victims had died, the district attorney’s office said."

Dallas Police Make Arrest In 38 Year Old Capital Murder Cold Case due to new types of forensic testing techniques Staff, Feb 19, 2022
Nearly 38 years ago, 21-year-old Mary Jane Thompson was found dead behind a Dallas warehouse on Irving Boulevard. She had been sexually assaulted and murdered. Her assailant has remained at large ever since. In 2018, Dallas Police Cold Case Homicide Detective Noe Camacho reopened the case and worked with the Dallas County DA Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) team on new types of forensic testing techniques. On February 18, 2022, 60-year-old Dallas man Edward Morgan was arrested and charged with the 1984 capital murder of Ms. Thompson.

Demanding justice: For 36 years, a woman sought her rapist
The Dallas Morning News, Sep 6, 2021
FGG used to convict serial rapist who confessed to at least 30 rapes in the Dallas area.

Serial rapist identified through genetic genealogy DNA testing gets 4 life sentences
Dallas County District Attorney's Office, Aug 27, 2021
A 75-year-old serial rapist who was identified more than 30 years after his crimes through genealogy DNA testing was sentenced to four life sentences on Friday, announced Dallas County Criminal District Attorney John Creuzot.

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.

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