Houston mayor: No more backlog of untested rape kits

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Thousands of sexual assault cases in Harris County are now closer to getting the attention they should have gotten decades ago.

This is a controversy we've been telling you about for many, many years now. More than 6,000 rape kits have gone untested, basically just taking up shelf space.

But today we learn all of the rape kits, all 6,000 plus, have been tested and there is no more backlog.

The announcement came down at around 10:30am. Houston Mayor Annise Parker said the years of hard work, trying to get caught up and get rape victims justice has paid off. All 6, 663 cases have been processed by the Houston Forensic Center.

"We can never erase the fact that these evidence kits sat untested on property room shelves across the nation for many, many years," said Mayor Parker. "but we can all move forward together in a way that makes us all proud."

You may remember, authorities discovered the backlog years ago giving a list of reasons as to why it was there including high costs and bad technology. But today, the backlog seizes to exist making Houston the first city in the country to complete the work.

To date, the Harris County DA's Office has been able to file 29 charges from the results of the rape kits. Two of those cases have already resulted in 40 and 45 year punishments.

Authorities today promised to work hard on getting more prosecutions for the victims of sexual assault.
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