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Springfield Police Department Clears Backlog Of Rape Kits

Rape evidence kit
St. Louis Public Radio
Kits designed to collect forensic evidence after a sexual assault are used by hospitals and agencies as part of an investigation.

SPD sent the last 15 kits for testing on Thursday.

The Springfield Police Department has cleared its backlog of sexual assault kits, it said Thursday. That's the day the final 15 kits were sent to a lab for testing . That comes after a nearly two-year process of working with local and state partners to secure funding and a laboratory, according to SPD in a news release.

The initial backlog consisted of 231 kits dating between 1989 and 2015. SPD was selected in late 2019 as the first agency to take part in the Missouri Attorney General’s SAFE Kits Initiative, and the first 30 backlogged kits were sent for testing.

Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams said in the news release, now that the process is finished, they “can move forward in these investigations and help survivors of sexual assault in Springfield seek long-awaited justice.”