CMPD Making Strides on Backlog of Untested Rape Kits
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) expects to nearly eliminate its backlog of untested rape kits by the summer of 2017 with assistance from grant funds dedicated to addressing the national backlog of sexual assault evidence kits.
Like most police agencies across the country, the department found itself with a large backlog of untested kits, as best practices and the department’s policies for testing sexual assault evidence evolved.
Previously, CMPD prioritized the processing of sexual assault evidence kits based on the need in each particular investigation, said Lt. Melanie Peacock, who heads the Sexual Assault Unit. The department didn’t have the resources to test every kit collected, she said, so it did not test kits when the sexual contact was not in question or either the victim or prosecutor declined to move forward with the case.