U.S. NewsCrime


Trump Signs Legislation Addressing Backlog Of Untested Rape Kits

The law allocates nearly $194 million a year from 2019-2024 with the goal of eliminating the backlog of untested rape kits in the U.S.
Posted at 3:31 PM, Dec 31, 2019

On Monday, President Trump authorized millions of dollars in funding for states to test backlogged rape kits.

President Trump signed the Debbie Smith Reauthorization Act of 2019, which allocates nearly $194 million in funding from the Justice Department each fiscal year from 2019-2024. This money goes to the Debbie Smith DNA Backlog Grant Program, DNA training and education programs, and the Sexual Assault Forensic Exam Grant Program.

In a statement, the White House said, "We know that DNA is much more likely than fingerprints to result in the identification of a criminal, yet thousands of rape kits currently sit untested in labs and on police storage shelves across the Nation."

It's estimated that there could be hundreds of thousands of rape kits awaiting testing in the U.S. The nonprofit group End the Backlog says that "for too long, ... adequate resources have not been allocated" to address the problem.