SAKI awarded the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office a $1.5-million grant in FY2016 to inventory, track, and test previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits (SAKs). The office also used the funds to create and implement protocols and policies, which helped improve coordination and collaboration among various stakeholders involved in sexual assault investigations, prosecutions, and survivor support.
In FY2019, SAKI awarded the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office $876,804 in additional funding. This money is being used to support the investigation and prosecution of previously unsubmitted SAKs in Jefferson County; work with community partners to develop a sustainable, trauma-informed approach to sexual assault investigations and prosecutions; and collect data to understand current dynamics and inform future projects, initiatives, and institutionalized best practices for trauma-informed investigations and prosecutions.
In FY2020, the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office was awarded an additional $2,000,000 in SAKI funding to continue inventorying, tracking, and testing previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits. The funding will also be used to maintain staff positions for the SAKI program director, two SAKI court advocates, a SAKI trial coordinator, and a SAKI investigator.
In FY2022, an additional $1.5 million grant was awarded to continue the submission of sexual assault kits for testing to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences laboratory. The funding will also be utilized for additional investigation and prosecution efforts, including the support of personnel on the SAKI project. The Jefferson County District Attorney's Office and its project partners continue to provide multidisciplinary support to victims and the community.
For more information on the specific SAKI awards for this site, see the table below.
|FY2016||$1,515,619||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2019||$876,804||Investigation and Prosecution of Cold Case Sexual Assaults|
|FY2020||$2,000,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
|FY2022||$1,500,000||Comprehensive Approach to Unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits|
Please direct all media inquiries to:
Trial for man facing 21 sex crimes underway
WVTM13, Jon Paepcke, Aug 28, 2023
"The trial of a man accused of victimizing more than a dozen women is underway in Jefferson County. Jonathan Fitzgerald "Master" Lockett is facing 35 total felonies, two-thirds of which are sex crimes."
Quin'darrius Carter pleaded guilty to five counts of rape in a Jefferson County courtroom.
https://www.wvtm13.com/article/jefferson-county-investigators-serial-rapist-backlog-sexual-assault-kit/42271308, Dec 14, 2022
"Carter's victims were part of a massive sexual assault kit backlog. In 2016, prosecutors found about 4,000 rape kits had gone untested in Jefferson County for decades. Since then, a special team with the national Sexual Assault Kit Initiative has worked to eliminate half of the backlog."
Jefferson County has cleared half of huge rape kit backlog
WVTM 13, Nov 10, 2022
"Big things are happening in a small room on the 16th floor of a Birmingham office building. A trio of investigators is quickly eliminating a formerly 4,000 untested rape kit backlog. "It makes me feel great. I think that is a huge success not only for us, but for our survivors," Sexual Assault Kit Initiative Investigator Justin Bowlin said. Their hard work has helped identify 74 serial offenders."
Birmingham man accused of assaults involving 7 victims; DNA sample used in investigation
6WBRC, Jul 1, 2022
"Investigators said they received a notice from the Alabama Department of Forensic Science (ADFS) regarding an unknown DNA sample being linked to multiple sexual assault kits which connected one man to multiple sexual assaults. This case was identified as a high priority serial offender by investigators with the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) unit."
WVTM 13 Investigates: Jefferson County rape kit backlog update
WVTM 13 Digital Staff, Jul 26, 2021
The Jefferson County, AL site offered up some updates to their SAK inventory. The number of hits in the national DNA database has doubled. The SAKI program has produced criminal charges against 10 suspects so far.
Possible serial rapists ID'd in testing of backlogged rape kits in Jefferson Co.
Cynthia Gould, ABC 33/49, Dec 23, 2019
Jefferson County SAKI has inventoried 4000 previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits. So far, 500 kits have been tested and 52 produced CODIS hits.
Cases from rape kit backlog getting closer to prosecution
Jon Paepcke, WVTM 13, Aug 19, 2019
Jefferson County has tested 400 of the previous unsubmitted sexual assault kits in their custody, and the DA is preparing 2 cases to present to a grand jury.
Accused serial rapist indicted for 5 New Orleans kidnappings, rapes
Robert Sherman, CBS 42, Mar 26, 2019
Jefferson County, Alabama is working to test the previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits in their possession.
Victims coping with massive sex crime kit backlog
Jon Paepcke, WVTM 13, Oct 16, 2018
Jefferson County's Crisis Center is assisting survivors of sexual assault by connecting them to the District Attorney and other community resources to learn more about why their sexual assault kits are still unsubmitted to evidence.
Jefferson County seeking investigator to clear sexual assault backlog
Jon Paepcke, WVTM 13, Oct 9, 2018
Jefferson County prosecutors want to hire an investigator to clear nearly 4,000 unsolved sexual assault cases and are using their SAKI funding to do so. Jefferson County's hope is that this special sex crimes investigator can investigate cases that are the result of processing previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits.
More than 3,800 untested rape kits in Jefferson County
Bree Sison, WBRC Fox 6 News, Apr 25, 2018
Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office completed an inventory of 27 jurisdictions and found 3,876 previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits. With BJA SAKI funding, Jefferson County will test the unsubmitted SAKs and establish a SAK tracking system that will be accessible to advocates, law enforcement, prosecutors, sexual assault nurse examiners, and the crime laboratory.
Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative aims to create a coordinated community response that ensures just resolution to sexual assault cases. Through this program, funding is provided to support multidisciplinary community response teams engaged in the comprehensive reform of jurisdictions approaches to sexual assault cases resulting from evidence found in previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits.