New Murder Charges Prompt Questions about Backlog of Rape Test Kits

DETROIT, MI – New murder charges were announced on Wednesday September 18th, 2019 against DeAngleo Martin. Those new charges brought about questions regarding the backlog of rape test kits that were abandoned in a Detroit police facility.

The case against DeAngelo Martin has taken time to put together. Surely the condoms that were found at several of the murder scenes have gone through DNA testing. Those tests would link Martin to each of the murders that he is now charged with. Martin’s DNA would be entered into a national database to determine if there were a match to other rapes that were not among those that have been discovered since 2018 on Detroit’s east side.

In 2009 there were a total of 11,341 rape test kits that were found in an abandoned Detroit police facility located at 5140 Riopelle St. In June we reached out to the assistant of Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy with questions about the backlog. She replied stating that the 11,341 rape kits have been tested. At that time they were waiting for the results on 621 of the last kits to be submitted. She went on to say that “It is not enough just to have the kits tested. Now the challenge is to investigate and prosecute the cases.”

During the news conference when the new charges were announced for DeAngelo Martin, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy did say that the investigation has not finished against the suspect. One can only assume that all avenues, including the previously abandoned kits, are being used to determine if Martin should face even more charges.

As of August 9th, 211 cases were being actively investigated, with 377 awaiting investigation. To date there have been 824 suspected serial sexual offenders identified, 197 convictions and 3,152 investigations completed from the testing of those sexual assault test kits.

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