South Carolina

Backlog Snapshot

South Carolina
Untested Kits:

1,800*

Testing:

Unknown

Does South Carolina...
Inventory untested rape kits?
Legislation pending.
Test backlogged rape kits?
No, the state has not committed to testing.
Test newly collected rape kits?
No, the state has not mandated testing.
Grant victims rights to notice and be informed?
No.
Track rape kits?
Legislation pending.
Appropriate funding for rape kit reform?
No.

The extent of the untested rape kit backlog in South Carolina is not entirely unknown. In 2018, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) reported possessing 813 untested rape kits, but law enforcement agencies have not provided a count of how many untested kits are in their possession. South Carolina law does not require law enforcement agencies to count, track, or test rape kits. 

In 2015, The Accountability Project issued an open records request to bring the number of untested kits in Charleston to light. Through our efforts, we have learned that the Charleston Police Department submitted 76% of all rape kits received between 2006 and 2015. As of October 2016, CPD reported 88 untested kits. 

In 2018, legislators introduced a bill that would require law enforcement to count and submit backlogged rape kits for testing, mandate submission and testing of all newly collected rape kits, and require the creation of a statewide tracking system, which must offer secure electronic access for victims. This bill failed to pass.

In 2019, legislators introduced a bill that would require SLED to create and operate a statewide rape kit tracking system to follow kits throughout the criminal justice process. Entities handling rape kits would be required to participate in the system, which must contain a secure victim portal to allow survivors to obtain information about their kit. Additionally, the bill requires SLED to produce semiannual reports detailing critical information such as: the total number kits in the system, the total number of kits surpassing six months since entry into the system that have yet to be tested, and the number of kits destroyed. Read our letter of support

TAKE ACTION TODAY TO BRING RAPE KIT REFORM TO SOUTH CAROLINA

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