The Backlog:


As of February, 2014, the Cleveland Police Department submitted 2,767 rape kits for testing in accordance with Ohio's Sexual Assault Kit Testing Initiative. Testing of a portion of those kits yielded more than 700 matches in the national DNA database and more than 90 criminal indictments. The Department expects to submit a total of at least 4,000 kits collected between 1993 and 2009 to the state by late Spring 2014.

In addition to the 4,000 rape kits, the Department recently discovered 67 cartons with evidence that had been sent for testing in the mid-2000s. Officials are working to determine whether the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) fully tested all of that evidence before returning it to Cleveland. The city has implemented a "test everything" approach regardless of the outcome of the original investigation, and the county hired temporary employees to help with the procees of sending all untested evidence to BCI.

The Prosecutor's Office formed a DNA Cold Case Task Force to handle investigation of the cases resulting from testing. The Task Force, which includes detectives, prosecutors, county and state investigators and advocates, is also conducting victim notifications when there is a DNA match. 

For more information on reforms happening in Ohio, click here

  • Backlog Status

Partially Counted
In Testing
Not Cleared

* As of December 2013, The Plain Dealer reported at least 4,000 untested kits in Cleveland.

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