MADISON, Wis. — The Latest on the state Department of Justice’s efforts to test thousands of sexual assault kits on Wisconsin police and hospital shelves (all times local):
Attorney General Brad Schimel’s spokesman says Schimel didn’t understand the question when a member of his sexual assault response team asked how many sexual assault kits have been tested.
A member of the Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Response Team asked Schimel during a meeting Tuesday whether it was true only 60 kits have been tested. Schimel said he didn’t know where that number came from, even though his spokesman, Johnny Koremenos, told The Associated Press on Monday that the state crime lab has tested 13 kits and a private lab has tested 50.
Koremenos said in an email after the meeting that Schimel didn’t understand the question because the total added up to 63 and he is being very precise about the number.
Attorney General Brad Schimel apparently doesn’t know how many sexual assault kits have been tested for evidence as part of a state Justice Department push to test kits dating back to 1990.
A DOJ inventory of police agencies completed in March revealed about 6,370 untested kits. The agency has submitted 800 kits to a private lab for testing. DOJ spokesman Johnny Koremenos told The Associated Press on Monday that the lab has tested 50 kits and the state crime lab has tested 13.
Schimel appeared at a meeting of the Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Response team on Tuesday. A team member asked him if it was true that only 63 kits have been tested. Schimel said he didn’t know where that number came from. A DOJ prosecutor verified that number to the team.
Koremenos didn’t immediately respond to an email.
Wisconsin Department of Justice officials are providing firmer numbers of untested sexual assault kits sitting on police and hospital shelves.
DOJ officials told the Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Response team on Tuesday that an inventory launched in March 2016 revealed 6,372 kits. Dane County had the most kits with 1,272.
They say more than 4,605 kits have been designated for testing. Of kits not designated from testing, 45 percent involve an offender that’s already been convicted and 38 percent involve a victim who hasn’t consented to testing.
The DOJ has sent 800 kits to a private lab for testing. The lab has completed testing on 50 kits.
DOJ’s website says the inventory turned up 5,800 kits. Agency spokesman Johnny Koremenos said Monday that 3,800 kits have been designated for testing.