Missouri attorney general announces plans for rape kit investigation

7 months 1 week 6 days ago Friday, November 10 2017 Nov 10, 2017 Friday, November 10, 2017 3:07:00 PM CST November 10, 2017 in News
By: Sana Moore, KOMU 8 Digital Reporter & Shaletta Norwood, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Missouri's attorney general said he is investigating the backlog of unprocessed rape kits.

Attorney General Josh Hawley announced Thursday his office will start an investigation to solve rape victims’ cases.

Hawley said it was long overdue for Missouri to start its investigation especially since 32 other states have started investigating.

“One in six women in our country face some sort of sexual assault in their life times,which is unbelievable and utterly unacceptable.” Hawley said.

Hawley said he and his office plan on finding out who is responsible for the rape kits not being sent to law enforcement. He also said the investigation will start with interviewing hospitals, emergency service providers, law enforcement and crime labs.

Jennifer Carter Dochler, the Public Policy Director for the Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence said there isn’t just one cause for the backlog.

“Sometimes there is a backlog because survivors do not know if they do want to come forward.” Dochler said.

Candice Kundert, a Columbia counselor, said the investigation can help more victims come forward and help victims psychologically.

“I get people who are in their sixties and seventies who’ve never reported it to anyone. It can affect all of their relationships it's not just sexual.” Kundert said.

Dochler said MCADSV said it tries to close the gap between the rape kits and who receives them by holding meetings with local law enforcement, rape centers, prosecutors, crime labs, and crisis centers about sexual assault within the state.

Hawley said the first plan of business is finding how large and far back the backlog goes within the state is a key component to tackling the issue. He said there are about 87 rape kits in Columbia the Columbia Police Department still hasn’t received.

Hawley said finding the rape kits will help law enforcement solve the cases they probably didn’t know existed.

He said he doesn’t want for the back log to vanish like it has in other cities in the country.

“In cities and in states that have processed through and have gotten rid of their rape kit backlog like Detroit and Cleveland for instance, law enforcement has found hundreds of pieces of additional evidence that allows them to prosecute crimes they did not even know were committed.” Hawley said.

Hawley said he commends victims for coming forward and encourages them to keep telling their stories for justice.

“We have to do our part for those who have been victims to make sure that their evidence is brought to light and that their perpetrator and their attackers are brought to justice. Hawley said.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Parks and Recreation Department could see some major changes in authority if a recommendation... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 7:16:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An attorney suing former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and his staffers says recently uncovered texts show... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 5:34:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- A study conducted by an MU professor shows sensitive medical information could be put in the wrong hands without... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 4:18:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - MU hosted a summit on Wednesday to discuss ideas about a new research building with the other UM... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 4:17:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
ELDON - Police in Eldon arrested a suspect Wednesday for an assault at a barber shop. Officers responded to... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:46:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Authorities said they were looking for a man near Vandiver Drive who was considered armed and dangerous. ... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:01:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Callaway County emergency officials are getting some new digs. Crews will soon move into a new... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 2:55:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - People in mid-Missouri are doing whatever it takes to stay cool during the summer. That includes trash... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 2:04:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) - Four years after Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill co-sponsored legislation targeting tax havens such as the Cayman... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 1:49:00 PM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - A judge has turned down a Ferguson lawmaker's attempt to run for a seat in the... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 9:36:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Philadelphia Zoo has welcomed a baby giraffe. Zoo officials announced Tuesday that Beau was... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 7:18:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
FERGUSON (AP) — St. Louis County authorities say a 70-year-old Green Park woman died from heat-related issues when her home's... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 6:29:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
KIRKWOOD (AP) — A 71-year-old St. Louis man and his adult son are both charged with assault for allegedly beating... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 6:02:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Harry S. Truman VA Hospital is building a home to ease the burden of travel for veterans... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:00:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
FAYETTE - City leaders are working toward a solution for its volunteer-based fire department. The Fayette Board of Aldermen... More >>
4 days ago Wednesday, June 20 2018 Jun 20, 2018 Wednesday, June 20, 2018 12:44:00 AM CDT June 20, 2018 in News
NEW BLOOMFIELD - New Bloomfield citizens are looking for answers after yet another city council meeting was canceled Tuesday. ... More >>
4 days ago Tuesday, June 19 2018 Jun 19, 2018 Tuesday, June 19, 2018 8:40:00 PM CDT June 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Ryan Lee Gehris said he’s always loved to ride his bike. Lately, that hobby has turned... More >>
5 days ago Tuesday, June 19 2018 Jun 19, 2018 Tuesday, June 19, 2018 6:39:00 PM CDT June 19, 2018 in News
MEXICO - The Mexico Public Safety Department arrested two people and accused them of child abuse in Mexico, Missouri, following... More >>
5 days ago Tuesday, June 19 2018 Jun 19, 2018 Tuesday, June 19, 2018 5:31:00 PM CDT June 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 79°
8pm 83°
9pm 78°
10pm 77°
11pm 77°