Check of untested rape kits yields surprising results - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Check of untested rape kits in Wayne County yields surprising results

Posted: Updated:

By ROBIN SCHWARTZ
MyFox Detroit Reporter

NORTHVILLE, Mich. (MyFox Detroit) -- The numbers are staggering, but the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office says 11,000 rape kits were found untested in a police property building in 2009. Now that several hundred have been though a lab, it appears at least 21 suspected serial rapists are out there on the streets.

"I'm calling it a pandemic because it is so tragic and so much work has to be done," said Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy, who spoke to us by phone on Mackinac Island where she is attending a conference.

She said right now the 21 suspects are only known by their DNA, but investigators are working to put names and faces with the evidence in the lab.

"This is the best way that we have to find the perpetrators and perhaps link them to other cases," said Dr. Jurgen Switalski.

Each kit takes from three hours to two days for the initial screening and four to six weeks for the DNA testing. It's a lengthy process, and we're told it could take years to clear up this backlog.

"We are getting hits. We are finding suspects on cases on a day to day basis," said Glen Hall.

However, as technicians tackle that mountain of evidence, the suspects are free to commit more crimes. Worthy said one alarming example is serial killer Shelly Brooks, whose murders were first exposed by the Problem Solvers in 2002. He is accused of killing seven prostitutes. Worthy said some of those women would still be alive if evidence had been processed more quickly.

"There's much of the crime that could've been avoided, no question about it."

With about 600 tests now completed, there's been just one conviction. Two suspects are awaiting trial, and thousands of victims are still waiting for justice.

  • Robin SchwartzRobin SchwartzMore>>

  • Documents show GM delayed recall of Saturn Ion

    Documents show GM delayed recall of Saturn Ion

    Sunday, April 20 2014 7:39 PM EDT2014-04-20 23:39:37 GMT
    Government documents show General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and warranty repair claims. The documents, posted on the NHTSA's website Saturday, show yet another delay by GM in recalling unsafe vehicles.
    Government documents show General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and warranty repair claims. The documents, posted on the NHTSA's website Saturday, show yet another delay by GM in recalling unsafe vehicles.
  • Judge sentences man whose daughter died in raid

    Judge sentences man whose daughter died in raid

    Friday, April 18 2014 6:12 PM EDT2014-04-18 22:12:36 GMT
    A Detroit man whose daughter was accidentally killed by police during a raid has been sentenced to 40 to 60 years in prison for second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a teenager.
    A Detroit man whose daughter was accidentally killed by police during a raid has been sentenced to 40 to 60 years in prison for second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a teenager.
  • FOXe report: Smart meter concerns

    FOXe report: Smart meter concerns

    Thursday, April 17 2014 10:53 AM EDT2014-04-17 14:53:23 GMT
    DTE Energy crews have installed smart meters, or advanced meters, on 1.5 million homes across Michigan. The new meters are an advancement in technology and can be read remotely by radio signals, but some homeowners say the meters are intrusive and dangerous.
    DTE Energy crews have installed smart meters, or advanced meters, on 1.5 million homes across Michigan. The new meters are an advancement in technology and can be read remotely by radio signals, but some homeowners say the meters are intrusive and dangerous.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Van Dyke Construction Scheduled Today

    Van Dyke Construction Scheduled Today

    Monday, April 21 2014 3:48 AM EDT2014-04-21 07:48:59 GMT
    A massive construction project is underway in Macomb County. If you travel on Van Dyke, you know how rough it is. Now, jackhammers are out there tearing up a two-and-a half mile stretch from 11 Mile to Chicago Rd. The road will be milled, then resurfaced with asphalt. New curbs will be installed. Nine intersections get new traffic signals. Sidewalks will be ramped to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Weather permitting, the project will be finished this summer.
    A massive construction project is underway in Macomb County. If you travel on Van Dyke, you know how rough it is. Now, jackhammers are out there tearing up a two-and-a half mile stretch from 11 Mile to Chicago Rd. The road will be milled, then resurfaced with asphalt. New curbs will be installed. Nine intersections get new traffic signals. Sidewalks will be ramped to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Weather permitting, the project will be finished this summer.
  • Chrysler Expanding Presence in China

    Chrysler Expanding Presence in China

    Monday, April 21 2014 3:32 AM EDT2014-04-21 07:32:50 GMT
    Fiat and Chrysler announced plans this weekend to build three new Jeep models in China for that market, the biggest for the vehicles outside the United States, as they attempt to boost sales in a country where they lag behind their competitors. The automakers said they will expand their joint venture with China's Guangzhou Automobile Group Co. Ltd., and increase the portfolio of Jeeps, which are currently imported to China. Production is expected to start in late 2015.
    Fiat and Chrysler announced plans this weekend to build three new Jeep models in China for that market, the biggest for the vehicles outside the United States, as they attempt to boost sales in a country where they lag behind their competitors. The automakers said they will expand their joint venture with China's Guangzhou Automobile Group Co. Ltd., and increase the portfolio of Jeeps, which are currently imported to China. Production is expected to start in late 2015.
  • Ford at the Beijing Auto Show

    Ford at the Beijing Auto Show

    Monday, April 21 2014 3:27 AM EDT2014-04-21 07:27:48 GMT
    Ford Motor Co. on Sunday unveiled a new Escort sedan designed in China for global sale at a Beijing auto show that highlighted the growing influence of Chinese tastes on the industry. Automakers are looking to China's biggest auto show this year to help boost sales in this huge but cooling market. Total sales last year reached 17.9 million vehicles, but growth is expected to slow from 15.7 percent to as low as 8 percent, even as newcomers including Lincoln and Tesla enter the market.
    Ford Motor Co. on Sunday unveiled a new Escort sedan designed in China for global sale at a Beijing auto show that highlighted the growing influence of Chinese tastes on the industry. Automakers are looking to China's biggest auto show this year to help boost sales in this huge but cooling market. Total sales last year reached 17.9 million vehicles, but growth is expected to slow from 15.7 percent to as low as 8 percent, even as newcomers including Lincoln and Tesla enter the market.
Powered by WorldNow

KDFW FOX 4
400 N. Griffin Street
Dallas, Texas 75202

Main Station Directory:
(214) 720-4444
News Fax:
(214) 720-3263 or (214) 720-3333

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices