The Backlog:


Milwaukee is one of the cities where we are using public records requests to uncover the number of untested rape kits in police storage. Through our efforts, we have learned Milwaukee has a backlog of 2,655 untested kits. To learn more about our process, see below. 

Right now, there is more we do not know about the backlog than we do know because few state governments and no federal agencies require law enforcement to track rape kit data. For that reason, we have undertaken The Accountability Project to bring greater transparency and accountability around rape kit testing practices nationwide.

Download the public records response from Milwaukee here.

  • Backlog Status

Counting Complete
Testing Status Unknown

* As reported by the Wisconsin Attorney General's Office

  • Additional Information

March 11: Call to Officer with Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) Office of Media and Communications, who said there is no backlog

March 12: Call to head of MPD Sensitive Crimes Division, who said there is no backlog, and untested kits from non-stranger cases do not constitute a “backlog”

April 7: Sent follow-up letter to Sensitive Crimes Division requesting number of untested kits 

April 16: Received email from Sensitive Crimes Division referring us to MPD Open Records Section

April 30: Sent formal public records request letter to MPD Open Records Section

June 25: Call to Assistant District Attorney, County of Milwaukee, who said Wisconsin’s Attorney General conducted a statewide inventory: MPD has 2,655 untested kits, and Wisconsin has 6,006 total

July 10: Call to Wisconsin Attorney General’s Office requesting written confirmation of numbers

July 14: Received response from MPD stating that backlog information could not be retrieved

August 6 - September 24: Calls and emails with Assistant Attorney General, State of Wisconsin

October 1: Letter received from Attorney General with full results from statewide inventory 

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