> DPS Sexual Assault Kit Initiative
DPS Sexual Assault Kit Initiative
Department of Public Safety (DPS) was awarded a total of $1.5 million in Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) funds from Bureau of Justice Assistance. The goal of SAKI is to support DPS in evaluating the approaches to sexual assault cases resulting from evidence found in sexual assault kits (SAKs) that have never been submitted to the Crime Lab for testing. DPS will use the testing results from the 568 eligible SAKS collected by Alaska State Troopers to develop evidence-based best practices. Additionally, DPS will follow up on resulting investigative leads, review for possible prosecution, and address the need for survivor notification and re-engagement with the criminal justice system.
AST Untested SAKs
50 previously tested
650 previously untested
568 submitted to private lab
82 not submitted for testing
16 anonymous reports
15 too damaged
All 568 eligible AST SAKs have been submitted to the private lab for analysis and all DNA reports have been received back. As of November 25, 2020, the results provided 199 cases with 202 possible CODIS eligible profiles, 59 profiles resulted in matches, 48 have not received a match, and 95 profiles were removed or withheld from CODIS. Profiles are removed from CODIS if determined later to be ineligible (e.g. profiles that are later confirmed to be consensual sexual partners are removed). Data will be updated quarterly. As cases move forward in the criminal justice system, the available data will be expanded.
* Please note that CODIS hits are database matches between a forensic sample (in these cases, swabs taken from a survivor's body) and a known DNA profile from the possible suspect. Often these hits are "warm hits" which means the forensic sample matches the named suspect. Cases that receive hits will be evaluated by a multidisciplinary team.
The University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA) Justice Center is a respected, independent resource for research in the state of Alaska. The UAA Justice Center was established by the Alaska Legislature in 1975 and is a research unit in the College of Health in UAA. Their mission is to "provide statewide justice-related education, research, and service. The Justice Center is an interdisciplinary unit that provides undergraduate graduate, and professional education; conducts research in the areas of crime, law, and justice; and provides services to government units, justice agencies, and community organizations throughout urban and rural Alaska to promote a safe, healthy, and just society. "
DPS SAKI enlisted the services of the UAA Justice Center to conduct comprehensive research to answer the overarching research question:
How could Alaska DPS and partners improve their practices related to sexual assault investigation,
prosecution, and victim engagement and support?
For questions regarding DPS SAKI, please contact the site coordinator: