GBI: ‘warehoused' DNA leads to child sex trafficking suspect
ATLANTA - The testing of previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits has led to a break in a case against a child sex trafficker.
According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, newly-tested DNA evidence has given them a person of interest in an active trafficking case.
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“For us this is extremely huge because had it not been for this evidence, we would not have known,” explained Nelly Miles, GBI spokeswoman. “Sex trafficking in Atlanta is a major problem. So, any opportunity that we can have to get evidence that’s going to help solve a case like that is very significant.”
The new evidence is the result statewide push to round up “warehoused” rape kits after it was discovered that thousands of them were sitting idle on hospital and police department shelves.
State legislators passed a law in 2016 that required law enforcement to turn over any outstanding evidence kits to the GBI so that they could understand the full scope of the problem and begin the process of testing the kits.
Right now, the GBI has about 4700 sexual assault kits in line for processing.
State Representative Scott Holcomb was the primary sponsor of the 2016 rape kit bill and said the new developments in this child sex trafficking case highlight the importance of testing those remaining kits.
“We don’t want anybody to be harmed by, by these really terrible people who have committed these crimes and have gone without any accountability for way too long,” said Rep. Holcomb.
Members of the House of Representatives approved a budget Wednesday that will add six additional workers to the GBI lab in July and another six in January 2018 to help speed up testing.
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