FBI's Rape News Isn't Good Enough

Monday, October 19, 2009

Despite FBI stats showing rapes at a 20-year low, Sarah Tofte says some hard facts are missing from this good news. The large number of untested rape kits in cities like L.A. and Detroit indicate that many rape survivors haven't received justice.

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Editor's Note: The following is a commentary. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily the views of Women's eNews.

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No one knows how many untested rape kits are out there. Human Rights Watch knows of no state that requires law enforcement to track and test every booked rape kit and no state or federal agency that collects data on rape kit backlogs.

But from what we know of the backlog in places like Los Angeles and Detroit, it's clear that for all the talk of historically low rape rates, we are still a long way from bringing justice to every rape victim.

Sarah Tofte is a researcher in the U.S. division of Human Rights Watch.

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