Legislation intended to speed up rape kit testing has unanimously passed the Michigan House of Representatives and is now headed for the Senate.
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy pushed for the legislation after the discovery of 11,000 untested rape kits in a Detroit police storage facility.
The legislation proposed by Worthy attempts to resolve the backlog and require timely testing of new rape kits, the Detroit Free Press reports.
“What those time standards will do is make sure that this problem never recurs, and there’s never another sexual assault victim in this state … who will wait years for justice,” Worthy told the Free Press.
Those timelines include:
Police have 14 days to pick up rape kits after being advised of their existence by a health-care facility.
After picking up the rape kit, police have 14 days to submit it to a lab for analysis.
Labs have 90 days to analyze the kits, and profiles from the kits must be uploaded to state and national databases.
Health-care facilities must store rape kits that are not turned over to police for at least a year.Worthy appeared with “Law & Order: SVU” actress Mariska Hargitay in March, when she proposed the legislation. At the time, about 100 “serial rapists” had been identified through DNA evidence after Worthy began pushing state officials to begin processing abandoned rape kits.