The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio has announced that the Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs has awarded more than $6.4 million in grant funding to support sexual assault kit testing, investigations and prosecutions in Northern Ohio. In addition, funding was awarded to provide services for prepubescent victims of sexual assault and assist medical nurses with obtaining specialized training.
The following is a summary of the awards.
City of Cleveland, $2,461,762
The City of Cleveland was awarded funding to continue sexual assault kit testing, identify victims of sexual assault cold cases and continue the implementation of best practices and victim-centered approaches to investigating and prosecuting these cases.
City of Akron, $2,002,676
The City of Akron was awarded funding to hire personnel to continue investigations and prosecutions into sexual assault cold cases. Funding was also awarded to conduct public outreach, support lab efforts for advanced DNA testing, provide support for victims and witnesses and provide training for investigators and prosecutors.
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, $1,395,078
The Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office was awarded funding to help identify “John Doe” defendants, solve sexually motivated homicides and re-investigate previous sexual assault kits to find case leads.
ProMedica Metro Forensic Program, Toledo: $600,000
ProMedica was awarded funding to provide coordinated forensic interviews, non-acute medical exams and follow-up care for prepubescent victims of sexual assault. In addition, the grant funding will assist nurses with obtaining their sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) certification.
DNA technology is a powerful tool to help law enforcement professionals solve and prevent crime. When tested, rape kit evidence can identify an unknown assailant, reveal serial offenders, and help prove a sexual assault. Although not a requirement, conviction in a criminal case can help bolster a civil suit.
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Our office represents victims of sexual assault. If you were a victim of sexual assault or misconduct, contact our office today for a free confidential consultation with our dedicated sexual assault lawyers to see how we can help you.