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KBI To Survey Kansas Law Enforcement Agencies For Backlogs Involving Sexual Assault Kits

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is trying to find out if Kansas has a backlog of untested sexual assault kits.

Officials say that across the country, hundreds of thousands of the kits remain untested.

The KBI recently sent surveys to all Kansas law enforcement agencies to identify if there is a testing backlog for the kits, which include swabs and specimens gathered during exams of sexual assault victims.

The group's director, Kirk Thompson, says the KBI doesn't think there is one, but wants to make sure.

Thompson says that 66 kits are currently awaiting testing at KBI labs. The bureau has labs that test DNA in Topeka, Kansas City and Great Bend.

Lisa Burdett, DNA technical leader for the KBI, said it takes between two and three hours to test the kit once the bureau receives it.

It takes another three to five days to process and analyze the DNA.

The Joyful Heart Foundation is a national nonprofit that's launched a program aimed at bringing attention to the backlog of rape kits.

It said the cost of testing a kit, which can range between $500 and $1,000, has played a role in delays.

The KBI hopes to begin analyzing the survey's results starting next year.