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Gov. Scott Signs Bill Requiring Law Enforcement To Test Evidence In Rape Cases

Florida Capitol Building in Tallahassee

Florida Capitol Building in Tallahassee. Source: WikiMedia Commons

Governor Rick Scott signed off on nine bills Wednesday, including a high-profile measure requiring law enforcement agencies to submit rape kits for testing.

The bill establishes time limits for local law enforcement agencies to submit the DNA evidence in sexual assaults, known as “rape kits,” to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for testing.

Demand for the bill followed revelations that more than 13,000 rape kits had been collected but not tested statewide.

FDLE officials told lawmakers that fiscal constraints had led to the backlog. On Wednesday, Attorney General Pam Bondi praised state leaders for allocating $10.7 million to help the agency catch up.

“They will not get behind in the testing, which is very important, of all the current ones they have to do involving homicides, current sexual assaults, and now we know all burglaries, of course…statutorily, DNA is taken and tested on those,” said Bondi.

Previously, Florida hasn’t required rape kits to be tested.


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