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State Auditor Kathy McGuiness Releases Report Announcing Delaware Erases Rape Kit Backlog
Kathy McGuiness, news.delaware.gov/, Apr 28, 2022
State Auditor Kathy McGuiness announced today the release of a special report titled “Delaware Erases Rape Kit Backlog.” This report reviewed the State of Delaware’s use of federal grant funds provided by the National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) for implementing best practices to clear the backlog of untested rape kits.

1989 Mesa cold case solved using advanced DNA and fingerprint tech; suspect arrested in Colorado with the assistance of SAKI funds for genealogy
Stephanie Bennett, Fox 10 Phoenix, Apr 26, 2022
"A cold case is now solved after more than three decades and a Mesa man has been arrested for the alleged murder of a young woman. 22-year-old Susan Amy Morse was found dead in her apartment near Country Club Drive and Southern Avenue back in 1989. The FBI and MPD arrested Thomas Cox for violent crimes he allegedly committed over 30 years ago. Using advanced DNA and fingerprint technologies, Cox was identified as the suspect in two separate cases. ""We just constantly look for stuff. When there’s new technology or new techniques on how to identify a suspect or examine evidence we buy into that, and we re-examine the evidence as the years go on and in this particular case it worked out dramatically,"" said MPD Sgt. Chuck Trapani."

The District Attorney’s Office Secures Cold Case Conviction in 1996 Kidnapping
Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office (OPDA), Apr 20, 2022
"This week, the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office (OPDA) Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) Unit Chief Mary Glass and Assistant District Attorney (ADA) Naomi Jones secured the cold case conviction of defendant Roland Butler for kidnapping, robbery and sexual assault in 1996. SAKI Unit Chief Mary Glass said, “This case is proof that justice does not have an expiration date. In court, 26 years after the assault, it was clear how this crime still affects the survivor. She testified in court that time has not erased the memory of what she endured and how the incident left her looking at the world with a jaded lens. We are glad to be able to finally secure justice for this survivor and her family.”

Missouri officials say they’re making progress in clearing the backlog of 7,000 untested evidence kits in sexual assault cases
Sarah Fentem, news.stlpublicradio.org/, Apr 4, 2022
"For more than three years, Missouri officials have been finding, tracking and testing the state’s backlog of thousands of the unaccounted-for kits. The state has sent 3,298 kits to labs for DNA testing, Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced Monday. Nearly half of the kits officials sent for testing have been returned. Of those, 500 had enough DNA evidence to be uploaded into the federal FBI’s criminal database. Of the 500 uploads into the database, there have been 201 matches. Because of those matches, prosecutors have charged three suspects with rape."

A Dane County judge sentenced a man whose DNA tied him to five sexual assaults between 2008 and 2014 to 10 years in prison
Ed Treleven, Wisconsin State Journal, Mar 31, 2022
"Calling him a “serial sexual predator,” a Dane County judge sentenced a man whose DNA tied him to five sexual assaults between 2008 and 2014 to 10 years in prison, atop the sentence he’s already serving for one of those rapes. Mariono L. Weaver, 51, who is serving a 12-year prison sentence for the 2014 rape of a woman on Madison’s South Side, was sentenced to five years in prison and five years of extended supervision for each of two cases in which Weaver pleaded guilty in February to third-degree sexual assault. Weaver was identified as a suspect in the 2010 cases after his DNA turned up during an effort by the state Department of Justice to process a backlog of untested rape kits."

Man Arrested In 20-Year-Old Cold Case Rapes Using DNA, Genetic Genealogy
Megan Carpentier, oxygen.com, Mar 21, 2022
"Kenneth Downing, 47, was arrested on Thursday at his job site in Spokane at the behest of the police in Pullman, Washington — about 75 miles south of Spokane — the Pullman Police Department said in a statement. He is currently facing four counts of first-degree rape, three counts of assault in the second degree with a finding of sexual motivation, three counts of unlawful imprisonment, one count of indecent liberties using force and two counts of first-degree burglary, according to Whitman County Jail records. They said that they used the DNA evidence to develop a genetic profile of the attacker and, with funding received from the Washington State Attorney General's Office's Sexual Assault Kit Initiative, used a genetic genealogy company to connect the DNA from the crime scenes to Downing, KREM reported."

Serial Rapist pleads guilty to string of Dekalb cold case secual assaults
Office of the DeKalb County District Attorney, Mar 16, 2022
"A Decatur man charged in a string of cold case rapes in DeKalb County has pleaded guilty to the crimes. During court proceedings on Friday, March 11th, Dionte Mapp, 39, pleaded guilty as indicted to Kidnapping (three counts), Rape (three counts), Aggravated Sodomy (two counts), and Aggravated Assault (two counts) in connection with sexual assault crimes against three women dating back to 2006 and the violent assault of a fourth woman in 2015 that led to a break in the previous cases."

Local law enforcement agencies get $177K to work through sexual assault kit backlogs
FOX 13 Seattle Staff, Mar 14, 2022
"The Attorney General's Office is providing more than $177,000 in cold storage units for law enforcement agencies across the state, all to better store evidence from sexual assault investigations. According to the AG's office, 53 of the state's 260 agencies reported they need more storage for evidence. ""More storage means more evidence can be tested, and more crimes can be solved,"" Ferguson said. ""These resources will bring justice to survivors."""

Man sentenced to 18 years in prison in connection with multiple rape cases
FOX 12 Staff, KPTV.com, Mar 12, 2022
"Frank Domont Hall Jr., 42, was sentenced to 18 years. On February 22, Hall pled no contest to charges of first-degree rape, first-degree attempted rape and first-degree sexual abuse in connection with offenses committed against two victims. The investigation and prosecution that led to the plea were undertaken by the Portland Police Bureau (PPB), the Multnomah County District Attorney (MCDA) under the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI). The nationwide project seeks justice with federal funding to conduct DNA analysis of previously untested sexual assault kits and other evidence. Frank Hall committed repeated acts of sexual assault against a female minor in Portland in 2012, and raped a woman at a downtown hotel in 2013. When contacted years later under the SAKI project, both women bravely agreed to be interviewed, to testify in court, and to participate fully in the re-investigation and prosecution of their cases."

Tulsa police receives $2 million federal grant to test sexual assault kits
Katie Keleher, KJRH 2 News, Mar 8, 2022
"The Tulsa Police Department received a $2 million grant from the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) to test previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits. TPD initially received this grant for $1.5 million in 2018 and recently reapplied for it. They originally had about 3,000 untested kits. With the previous grant, it tested nearly 800 of those."