Today, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced that his office has awarded over 650 Missouri entities (law enforcement and hospitals) a Community Partnership Award for their vital assistance in completing the Phase II inventory of sexual assault kits within the SAFE Kit Initiative. The awards were mailed last week.
“The success of the SAFE Kit Initiative depends on active participation from hospitals and law enforcement agencies willing to dedicate the time and effort to help us clear the backlog of untested sexual assault kits and achieve justice for victims,” said Attorney General Eric Schmitt. “We wanted to highlight the wonderful work these departments and medical facilities have done and thank them for their continued partnership with our Office on this vital initiative.”
The Community Partnership Award recognizes law enforcement and hospitals that have aided the Attorney General’s Office in working to inventory untested sexual assault kits, clear the backlog, and get kits tested. Phase III of the SAFE Kit Initiative will begin soon.
Attorney General Schmitt launched the SAFE Kits Initiative on February 27, 2019, and appointed Judge M. Keithley Williams to lead the effort. Made possible by several federal grants from the Bureau of Justice Assistance and money disbursed by the state legislature, the SAFE Kit Initiative is working to eliminate the backlog of untested sexual assault kits by gathering an inventory and working with law enforcement partners to get those kits tested, entered into CODIS, and referred for prosecution.