Sen. Wendy Davis Hopes New Tax Can Help Tackle Rape Kit Backlog
FORT WORTH (1080 KRLD) – A state senator from Fort Worth wants to clear a huge backlog of untested rape kits in evidence rooms across Texas.
Democrat Wendy Davis says there’s an estimated backlog of at least 20,000 rape kits, or DNA samples from victims that have never been tested, throughout the state.
“The estimate is that the backlog is about 20,000 , maybe 30,000 or 40,000,” she said. “Obviously that’s alarming.”
She’s teaming up with the Texas Department of Public Safety to get an audit to figure out how much money is needed to complete those tests and bring sexual predators to trial. She’s banking on money from a new tax on adult oriented businesses to help pay for it.
“That tax was challenged as being unconstitutional, but the Texas Supreme Court upheld it,” she said.
In March, the state’s highest court defended the new $5 per-patron tax at strip clubs, saying it would help decrease sexual assaults and other crimes by deterring patrons from drinking as much as they would.
Davis figures the law could provide $4 million that can be used to tackle the rape kit backlog.