Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) GranteeNevada Office of the Attorney General

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The Nevada Office of the Attorney General (NOAG) will use its SAKI grant award to test a portion of the backlogged SAKs from southern Nevada. It will also use funds for investigation follow-ups, prosecutions, and victim support based on results from the backlog testing.

In 2016, SAKI awarded the Nevada's Office of the Attorney General an additional grant in the amounts of $1.96 million. They also received an additional federal award in the amount of $523,268 to fund a sexual assault tracking system. The office will use the funds to resolve Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) hits, provide a statewide assessment of current policies and practices, cover training costs, and increase investigative and prosecutorial resources.

Funded in 2015, the Nevada Office of the Attorney General and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department have used SAKI funding to achieve several goals and milestones:

  • Testing is complete on 1,556 out of 5,895 inventoried SAKs, with 416 CODIS uploads and 141 hits.
  • The Nevada Office of the Attorney General/Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has also made legislative changes as a result of the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative:
    • a law enforcement agency is required to submit certain sexual assault forensic evidence kits to a forensic laboratory within a certain period after receipt thereof;
    • a forensic laboratory is required to test sexual assault forensic evidence kits within a certain period after receipt thereof and to report certain information concerning sexual assault forensic evidence kits on an annual basis; and
    • the Attorney General is required to designate a department or division of the Executive Department of State Government to establish a statewide sexual assault forensic evidence kit tracking program.

In 2017, NOAG received an additional $933,656 in funding from SAKI to pursue the collection of lawfully owed DNA. The funding will go toward developing procedures to ensure consistency in collecting DNA from offenders, collecting DNA samples at all correctional facilities, and training personnel to ensure DNA collection procedures align with legal and laboratory standards.

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Find out more information about Nevada's efforts to address previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits and read below for other news and events.

News and Events

A New Sexual Assault Prosecutor For Washoe County
Andi Guevara, 2 News, Nov 20, 2018
SAKI funds allow Washoe County, Nevada to hire a new prosecutor dedicated to ensuring justice for sexual assault survivors and resolving active and cold cases of sexual assault.

Nevada AG's office: Rape kit backlog getting addressed
Associated Press, Las Vegas Sun, Nov 20, 2018
The Nevada attorney general's office announced that almost all of the 8,000 previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits have been sent to labs for testing.

Nevada testing of backlogged sexual assault kits leads to 17 arrests
Jordan Gartner. ABC 13 Action News, Nov 2, 2018
The Nevada Attorney General's Office announced that nearly 8,000 previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits have been sent for testing. So far, there have been 600 DNA matches and 17 arrests from completed tests.

Rape Kit Testing Leads to Arrests
KOH AM 780 News Talk, Sep 28, 2018
As of September, the testing of previously unsubmitted rape kits has lead to 13 arrests in Nevada.

Hidden in Prison: Nevada's Testing of Inmate DNA Solves Cases
Seth Augenstein, Forensic Magazine, Sep 21, 2018
There have been nine hits so far after DNA from many of the most violent and dangerous criminal in Nevada have been entered into CODIS. Three homicides, four rapes, one robbery, and one auto theft have been connected to offenders already behind bars.

AG: 12 arrests in Nevada as most of backlogged rape kits get sent for testing
News 3 Las Vegas, Aug 2, 2018
Testing of previously untested SAKs has resulted in at least 12 arrests in Nevada. As of June 30th, 6,367 of the 7,645 untested kits had been sent for testing.

Nevada Attorney General launches website addressing sex assault test kit backlog
KTNV Staff, May 10, 2018
The Nevada Attorney General’s Office launched a website providing information on their efforts to test previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits. The website including statistical information regarding SAK testing, information on how to report a sexual assault, and resources for survivors and law enforcement agencies.

As Nevada chips away at its rape kit backlog with one-time funds, officials eye permanent solution
Megan Messerly and Michelle Rindels, The Nevada Independent, Sep 10, 2017
Las Vegas Metro Police Department has received over $4.7 million to address a backlog of previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits but is looking for ways to ensure long term sustainability for timely DNA testing.

$4M funding to help clear Nevada backlog in rape kit testing
Colton Lochhead, Las Vegas Review-Journal, Aug 24, 2017
Thanks to an additional $4.35 million funding injection, Nevada will be better able to address its backlog of untested sexual assault kits. The funding, along with funding from the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative, will help Nevada submit and test the remaining kits, as well as assist investigation and prosecution on the DNA hits coming back from those cases. To learn more, read the full article.

Update on untested rape kits in Nevada
Ben Margiott, MyNews4, Mar 28, 2017
The Nevada Attorney General's Office provided an update on testing progress across the state. As of March 2017, around one third of untested kits in the state have been sent for testing. The office set December 2018 as the target date to complete testing in Southern Nevada. Read the story to get the full update.

Eight arrests made from latest rape kit backlog tests
Christy Wilcox, Las Vegas News, Dec 17, 2016
As a result of federal CODIS DNA hits, Las Vegas metro police have arrested eight sexual predators. This comes after 473 kits were analyzed as part of Nevada’s grant funding to end the backlog of rape kits in the state. Notably, Nevada is one of only three sites to receive federal grant money 2 years in a row. To learn more about Nevada’s efforts to address the SAK backlog, read the full article and watch the associated video.

Funds to help Henderson police tackle backlog of sexual assault kits
Las Vegas Review-Journal, Mar 31, 2016

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