NC Attorney General Josh Stein discusses prompt rape kit testing in Durham

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein discussed the testing of rape kits Thursday morning alongside several other officials.

At 11 a.m., Stein held a press conference at Durham Police Headquarters with Durham Police Chief Cerelyn Davis and District Attorney Satana Deberry.

RELATED: Proposed NC law calls for $6M to test 15,000 backlogged rape kits

A new piece of legislation is prioritizing rape kit testing in North Carolina, according to Stein.

Stein held a news conference back in January to announce a crackdown on ending the backlog of untested rape kits in the Tar Heel state.

On Thursday, Stein maintained his stance in pushing for the prompt testing of rape kits, versus letting them sit on the shelves.

"When we test the kits, we solve crimes," Stein said. "Durham is now the number two city in the state of North Carolina in terms of moving kits off the shelves, where they do us no good, and into the evidence analysis process where we can eventually solve crimes."

In 2018, state investigators learned there were more than 15,000 rape kits that had never been tested. This failure to test rape kits, in some cases, allowed sexual predators to remain free.

"Untested sexual assault kits that are on local law enforcement shelves all across North Carolina, represent one of the biggest threats to public safety we face in this state," Stein said. "Testing sexual assault kits is essential to protecting our communities."
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