Florida Lawmaker Files Bill Seeking To Speed Up Processing Of Untested Rape Kits

Sep 18, 2015

Rep. Janet Adkins (R-Fernandina Beach) speaking during a recent press conference on Florida's untested rape kits.
Credit Florida Channel

A Florida lawmaker has filed a measure aimed at speeding up the processing of DNA evidence collected in sexual assault investigations. That’s after a recent call by Attorney General Pam Bondi to get more funding for crime labs all across the state to test thousands of untested rape kits.

Rep. Janet Adkins (R-Fernandina Beach), the bill’s House sponsor, says this issue is close to her heart.

“Having a family member who’s been assaulted, this is personally important to me,” she said, during a recent press conference led by Bondi. “I think it’s critical, and I think it’s common sense that if DNA evidence is collected, that it’s tested.”

Under Adkins’ bill, any DNA evidence collected in a sexual assault investigation must be submitted to the statewide criminal analysis lab system within 21 days.  The Florida Department of Law Enforcement would have two months to submit a plan for analyzing the untested rape kits, and has until June 30th, 2017 to finish analyzing the evidence. Tampa Democratic Representative Janet Cruz also recently filed a similar bill.

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