Dallas Rape Cases Expected to Increase
The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office believes it will be filing about 400 new rape charges in the coming year. The new charges stem from testing of old rape kits. Some of the cases date back to 1996. Bringing the cases to indictment is made possible because of better and more accurate DNA testing. The Dallas Police began testing their back log of rape kits last October. The process is slow but a case is filed once they find a match.
The District Attorney’s Office will have a special unit to handle the new cases. Right now the unit consist of two prosecutors and two investigators. The new cases will be either Aggravated Sexual Assault, which carries a five to life penalty range, or Sexual Assault, which carries a two to twenty year penalty range.
The new cases will likely be stranger on stranger crimes. No doubt the prosecutors recommendations will be high prison time recommendations. Criminal defense attorney’s will have to attack the DNA collection or testing process or try to show the sexual encounter was consensual.