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Rape Kit Backlog: A New Setback for Victims

The city of Los Angeles has reneged on its commitment to cut an enormous backlog of rape kits -- untested DNA evidence from rapes and sexual assaults – outraging victims' rights advocates.

Last year, following increased media attention and years of pressure from rights groups, the city approved $1.4 million to hire new staff members for the DNA crime laboratory and outsource rape kits to private labs for testing. But last week, officials announced that due to the city's fiscal crisis they would not hire new crime lab staff, breaking their promise to expedite the testing of rape kits in Los Angeles County.

In a NOW investigation earlier this year, Senior Correspondent Maria Hinojosa reported that thousands of rape and sexual-assault evidence kits had never been analyzed by the LAPD.

California isn’t the only state with a backlog in processing rape kits; in states across America, tens of thousands of women are left waiting for justice.

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