The Washington State Attorney General's Office (AGO) received a $3-million SAKI grant in FY2017. The grant money is currently being used to test thousands of sexual assault kits (SAKs). This first SAKI grant helped to establish a SAKI team with investigators and trained law enforcement.
In FY2019, the Bureau of Justice Assistance awarded the AGO an additional $2.5 million to continue efforts with their SAKI project. This funding is currently being used to review partially tested SAKs and continue testing SAKs from their inventory. Once AGO has completed their inventories, funding will be utilized to expand victim advocacy services by hiring a full-time victim advocate to support victim-centered, trauma-informed practices. The FY2019 award will also be utilized to retain current investigators dedicated to their SAKI project.
The AGO also received funding in FY2019 which is being utilized for efforts related to unsolved sexual assault casesspecifically for collecting lawfully owed DNA from offenders convicted of murder, manslaughter, kidnapping, or a felony sex crime. Currently, the AGO is finalizing their census of offenders who owe lawfully owed DNA and piloting their DNA collection plan in one county in Washington.
In FY2020, the AGO was awarded an additional $670,000 in SAKI funding to continue work from their previous SAKI awards. This funding will be utilized to purchase necessary materials for local agencies to collect lawfully owed DNA samples from identified offenders, test the samples, upload eligible DNA profiles into the Combined DNA Index System, and continue solving cases associated with previously unsubmitted SAKs.
For more information on the specific SAKI awards for this site, see the table below.
|FY2017||$3,000,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2019||$1,500,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2019||$1,000,000||Expansion of DNA Databases to Assist with Sexual Assault Investigations and Prosecutions: Collection of Lawfully Owed DNA from Convicted Offenders and Arrestee DNA Collections|
|FY2020||$670,000||Expansion of DNA Databases to Assist with Sexual Assault Investigations and Prosecutions: Collection of Lawfully Owed DNA from Convicted Offenders and Arrestee DNA Collections|
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WI DOJ Launches Program To Address Backlog Of Untested Sexual Assault Evidence Kits
Laurel White, Wisconsin Public Radio, Jan 30, 2017
A new initiative by the Wisconsin Department of Justice and a sexual assault prevention group aims to decrease the backlog of sexual assault evidence kits in the state. The initiative, called “By Your Side,” reaches out to survivors of sexual assault who have had kits collected and provides connections tosupport services. Read the full story or visit www.byyoursidewi.org to learn more.
Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative aims to create a coordinated community response that ensures just resolution to sexual assault cases. Through this program, funding is provided to support multidisciplinary community response teams engaged in the comprehensive reform of jurisdictions approaches to sexual assault cases resulting from evidence found in previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits.