Illinois NOT processing rape kits????

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Cubby, Feb 27, 2010.

  1. Cubby

    Cubby fly the W!

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    Illinois plans reforms for processing DNA

    Many rape kits were shelved under the old rules


    Illinois is moving to reform the way DNA evidence from sexual assaults is processed after a Tribune review found that many rape kits were being placed in police storage untested, robbing the state of opportunities to solve crimes and exonerate the wrongfully convicted.

    <Snip>

    After reporting that police were not submitting many of the kits to the Illinois State Police crime lab for testing, the Tribune found that even when kits are submitted, the lab sometimes refuses to analyze them. For example, since 2007 the crime lab has returned at least 88 kits to the Chicago Police Department untested, according to the department.

    <snip>

    The Tribune review found that over the last two years large suburban police agencies have stored untested kits with potential DNA evidence from nearly 100 alleged victims of sexual assault or abuse. They include a woman who claimed she was sexually assaulted in Downers Grove by a stranger who dragged her to the ground and bit her; a 6-year-old Bolingbrook boy who told investigators an older child had forced him to perform oral sex; and an Aurora woman who reported being sexually assaulted by an acquaintance who later made a taped confession, according to police records.

    The suburban departments said they do not send kits to the lab if a prosecutor has declined to press charges;

    another snippet from DuPage:
    Many untested kits fall into this category, such as the case of the Aurora woman who was allegedly sexually assaulted by an acquaintance who later made a taped confession. Joe Birkett, the DuPage County state's attorney, said his office declined to press charges because the victim had initially expressed interest in having sex with the accused.

    much much more at link:

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/ct-met-rape-kit-reform-20100208,0,6530596.story

    this is an outrage! How can they NOT test for forensic evidence? especially in some of the cases the trib used as examples! :furious:

    I need to pick my mouth up off the floor.

    Now at least I partially know why so many cases are unsolved in Illinois. Sheesh!
     
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  3. Cubby

    Cubby fly the W!

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    Also from the article:

    Under the new protocol taking shape, the state crime lab would analyze all rape kits unless the victim recants or law enforcement concludes a crime did not occur, said Cara Smith, deputy chief of staff to Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

    Why was I under the impression this was already protocol? Why is it Illinois still seems to be back in the dark ages when it comes to common sense and the law?

    I'm stunned to learn this is just taking shape now.
     
  4. Blue_Dolphin308

    Blue_Dolphin308 We can't help everyone, But everyone can help some

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    What a mess! What a mess!
     
  5. chesterp

    chesterp Former Member

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    Unbelievable!!!!!!
     
  6. kgeaux

    kgeaux New Member

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    This is really not that unusual, I've been told. DNA tests are expensive, and many LE departments/states decide that it is not worth running if they don't have a specific suspect to compare with.

    When Louisiana had a couple of serial killers on the loose several years ago, it was found that we had a huge backlog of DNA samples from rapes----going back more than a decade. When samples slowly began to be tested, we had at least one man released from Angola, one grandson who had been living for over 10 years under the accusation that he had raped and killed his grandma found to be completely innocent, and other men who were serving time for other crimes were found to be guilty of multiple rapes.

    It is absolutely ridiculous to have no policy in place demanding the testing of DNA samples: why on earth would any rape victim go through the additional trauma of having evidence collected from her body if LE is just going to shelve the evidence? And of course, if the rapist knows his chances of being caught are next to nothing, he'll just continue raping.
     
  7. WholeLottaRosie

    WholeLottaRosie Dancing on a moonbeam!

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    I am not defending them (ISP) and I haven't read the article yet, but, I know their lab is way overwhelmed. They are supposed to building a new large lab that will take a lot of the load off, but, due to funding issues, they bought the land, cleared the old building on it and all but haven't broken ground (the new lab will be pretty close to me). Maybe this will give the money to get the lab built.
     
  8. Cubby

    Cubby fly the W!

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    While that may be true WLR, while there are unsolved murders which involve rape, it would make sense to test the DNA. I can't speak for the rest of the state, but my county had a 10 million dollar surplus for 2009. We have a thing called Codis now, and IMO, there is no excuse for Illinois to think they are exempt from participating in a national database to solve any number of crimes.... JMO of course and not at all directed at you WLR. Just my frustration with the attitude and excuses from LE in IL why these kits sat on a shelve getting dusty.
     

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