SAKI awarded the State of Minnesota a $2-million grant in FY2018 to collect and test all unsubmitted sexual assault kits (SAKs) identified in a 2015 survey. Minnesota's grant partner, Anoka County Sheriff's Office, conducted investigations for Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) "hit" cases and provided victim advocacy services for those cases. Additionally, the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MNCASA)another grant partnerdeveloped protocols related to investigation, victim advocacy, and prosecution; MNCASA also identified and coordinated discipline-specific needs and training.
In FY2019, the State of Minnesota received another $2 million in SAKI funds to continue their efforts from the FY2018 grant. With this new round of funding, they were able to continue a comprehensive testing and data collection process for all unsubmitted SAKs identified in the 2015 inventory; this work helped to develop policy and protocols for future triaging, testing, and investigation. In addition, they extended current victim advocacy services for sexual assault investigations in Anoka County, an extension prompted by offender profiles that were identified through the SAK testing process.
In FY2020, the State of Minnesota received their third $2-million SAKI grant to complete the testing of SAKs identified in their 2015 statewide untested SAK inventory. Additionally, the funding will be used to increase the capacities of Minnesota victim service professionals, law enforcement agencies, and prosecutors' offices; improve the victim services experience; and implement a statewide SAK tracking system.
For more information on the specific SAKI awards for this site, see the table below.
|FY2018||$2,000,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2019||$2,000,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2020||$2,000,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
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BCA finishes testing on previously unsubmitted rape kits from 2015 backlog
CBS Minnesota, Jul 27, 2023
"The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says it has caught up on a years-long backlog of rape kits. In 2015, law enforcement agencies were asked to account for all untested kits and send them to the BCA for testing. Of the backlogged kits tested, approximately 130 new suspects were identified according to the BCA."
Minneapolis initiative to tackle untested rape kits brings first conviction
Star Tribune, May 8, 2023
"For more than a decade, their rape kits sat untested on a shelf. But on Monday, two women who accused James Andrew Works, 49, of kidnapping and raping them for hours at gunpoint in 2010 said they no longer have to live in fear. Works was sentenced to 32½ years in prison after a Hennepin County jury found him guilty of all charges following a two-week trial. It's the first conviction resulting from a new initiative to tackle a backlog of untested sexual assault forensic exams in Minneapolis."
New Minnesota rape kit tracking system promises more accountability
MPRNews, Jul 13, 2022
"The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is rolling out a new system to help survivors of sexual assault track information about their cases. The BCA will begin using the Track-Kit system statewide this week. The system gives survivors of sexual assault 24/7 online access to information about their sexual assault kit. The system is part of a mandate from the Minnesota Legislature to give survivors access to information about their kits."
Minneapolis man charged with 2014 rape as prison time is set to end for another assault
Paul Walsh, Star Tribune, Feb 18, 2021
DNA evidence and fingerprints lead to an arrest in a sexual assault from 2014.
Testing, preservation of rape kits now law
Jeffrey Hage, Monticello Times, Dec 9, 2020
This law sets in writing that all rape kits from cases reported to police must be tested and permanently preserved. In cases not reported to police, rape kits must be preserved for 30 months so evidence exists if a sexual assault victim choses to pursue charges at a later date.
KARE 11 Investigates: Rape kit reforms pass, signed into law
Brandon Stahl, KARE 11, Nov 5, 2020
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed new law mandating all reported sexual assault kits must be tested and that all non reported sexual assault kits must be kept for 30 months. The bill also mandates a tracking system for SAKs to be created.
State Awarded Grant to Examine Untested Rape Kits
Jennifer Mayerle, WCCO 4 CBS Minnesota, Dec 26, 2018
Minnesota has been awarded an additional $2 million SAKI grant to help test more than 3,000 previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits in 2019.
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.