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BCA finishes testing on previously unsubmitted rape kits from 2015 backlog

BCA has cleared backlog of untested rape kits from 2015
BCA has cleared backlog of untested rape kits from 2015 00:28

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says it has caught up on a years-long backlog of rape kits.

In 2015, law enforcement agencies were asked to account for all untested kits and send them to the BCA for testing. 

Of the backlogged kits tested, approximately 130 new suspects were identified according to the BCA.

Last year, the BCA implemented a new tracking system that uses a barcode to update information about the kit's status and location in real time, providing survivors with up-to-date information on where their case stands.

The BCA says it plans to reach a 90-day turnaround period on sexual assault kits sometime this fall.

During the most recent legislative session, Gov. Tim Walz signed into law $8 million for BCA staff and equipment to help to reduce the turnaround times for all laboratory testing, including rape kits.

Much of the testing was done using the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative Project federal grants.

The BCA says the 1,700 unsubmitted kits from the Minneapolis Police Department are not included in the most recent report and are being tested separately.

Sexual assault kits are used by law enforcement to identify cases that are linked, find suspects in unsolved crimes and help investigators to identify suspects in the future.

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