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When police Chief Lee Russo began reviewing rape investigations in West Valley City, Utah, he made a disturbing discovery: 124 rape kits were gathering dust on the shelves of the police department he had just inherited. The cases didn’t pan out for various reasons. The victims didn’t want to pursue charges. They had changed their stories. They couldn’t be located.
 
But with advances in DNA profiling and database technology, Russo said, every rape kit has the potential to solve other crimes or identify patterns.
 
So Russo took the problem to the state crime lab only to make another disturbing discovery: It would take the lab at least two years to get all the old kits analyzed and logged into national databases.
 
West Valley City is not the only police agency with untested rape kits. Salt Lake City and Unified police departments both acknowledge that rape kits are processed at the discretion of investigators — and those that are tested could face long delays.
 
 
Source: The Salt Lake Tribune
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