Would ease backlog of rape kits in U.S.
A pair of Texas lawmakers is leading the way toward eliminating a backlog of 400,000 rape kits sitting in labs across the U.S.
An audit of Houston's Crime Lab last year showed 66,000 rape kits sat unprocessed here.
Senator John Cornyn and Congressman Ted Poe hope the SAFER Act of 2012 helps victims avoid the injustice Cornyn says was suffered by a Dallas-area woman years ago.
"She was raped in 1984 at knife-point, her rape kit was not tested until 2008," Cornyn told reporters Tuesday. "That's after her statute of limitations had run out, and after the person who assaulted her had committed other sexual assaults."
Poe remembered one 13-year-old rape victim who also had to wait two decades before a suspect was finally caught.
"It was too late for her," Poe said. "And the individual could not be prosecuted."
If passed, the SAFER Act would among other things, create a national registry and provide local agencies money to help process DNA evidence.
"Shouldn't we go that extra mile to give these rape victims some closure and justice?" asks Beverly Campos with the Houston chapter of Parents of Murdered Children.