Flint gets money to test rape kits - WNEM TV 5

Flint gets money to test rape kits

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FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

Across the county, more than $40 million has been awarded to law enforcement agencies to test rape kits.

Now, millions of dollars are going to the city of Flint to test the hundreds of rape cases that have gone unsolved and rape kits that collected DNA left untested.

“Some of them have been tested so we are now at about 300 kits that need to be tested,” said David Leyton.

Leyton, the Genesee County prosecutor, said the city of flint now has the money it needs to potentially crack hundreds of rape cases and give the victims closure.

“They've been waiting many years for help in determining who did this to them,” Leyton said. “This will be able to get them justice.”

Untested rape kits is not only a problem here locally, in Michigan the Department of Justice awarded more than $5 million.

The Flint Police Department will receive approximately $1.3 million to address the backlog of untested rape kits.

Mayor Dayne Walling took to social media to praise the federal government’s effort to address what many consider a national crisis.

Police Chief James Tolbert responded, saying addressing the backlog of untested rape kits in the city of Flint has been a top priority since taking over the department almost two years ago.

Leyton said the victims have waiting long enough and deserve to know who committed this crime and the perpetrators deserve time in prison.

“So that victims can get justice,” Leyton said. “So we can prosecute the perpetrators of these very vicious crimes, and closure so they can feel a sense of justice.”

The cost of one rape kit is roughly $800, but it’s the cost of analyzing the DNA that many cities can’t afford, according to experts.

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