Michigan state police continue to test thousands of untested rape kits backlogged across the state.
But a new grant will help give the department more resources to test those kits faster and take on other major problems across the state.
More money for more prosecutions.
It’s a goal Michigan state police hope to achieve with a whopping 7 million dollars in awarded grants.
“The monies are also going to deal with the backlog of rape kit examinations within the state of Michigan,” said First Lt. and Commander of the Michigan State Police Lansing Post Joseph Thomas.
In fact 2 million dollars will go directly to testing those kits and will pay for a statewide inventory of *all untested kits in Michigan.
The grants will also help open up more resources locally for example the Detroit post of Michigan state police was sending many of their untested rape kits here to the Lansing post with their forensic laboratory, providing enough money to send the kits to other labs to get the job done.
“It’s gonna allow us to send some of those kits beyond the state of Michigan and we’re receiving some assistance from the state of New York,” said Thomas.
The department was also awarded money to tackle problems like human trafficking,
heroin, and sex offender monitoring in the state.
Lt. Joseph Thomas of MSP says those dollars will translate into task forces to specialize and solve problems– before they spread to different areas of the state.
“it will be used for support the bodies to run that task force once again one agency can’t do it alone but a task force allows us to bring in members from other agencies,” said Thomas.
Thomas says the next step is organizing those task forces then getting to work.
The department also received a grant to purchase mobile, digital fingerprint scanners for troopers to use in the field.
Here’s a full list of the grants awarded:
Bureau of Justice Assistance, Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI)
Award amount: $1,385,000 District Attorney of New York, Sexual Assault Kit Program Award amount: $1,996,991
Bureau of Justice Assistance, Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking Award amount: $900,000 Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, Anti-Heroin Task Force Program Award amount: $1,460,611 National Institute of Justice, DNA Arrestee Collection Process Implementation Grants Program Award Amount: $338,134 Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Criminal History Improvement Program
Award amount: $1,035,739
Office of Justice Programs, Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking Program Award amount: $286,817