Serial Predators: The Connection Between Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault

Sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse are inextricably linked. While Joyful Heart’s top policy priority is ending the backlog of untested rape kits, we frame this work to achieve our broader mission: ending this violence forever. This Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we explore the overlap between domestic violence and sexual assault, and how efforts to end the backlog have brought to light the prevalence of this overlap.

What the Numbers - and Lack Thereof - Really Tell Us

When the team at Joyful Heart began gathering data for the new interactive map on endthebacklog.org, illustrating everything we know about the rape kit backlog, we worried that the map might be a bit bare. Looking now at the final version of the map, the results are actually very powerful.

Joyful Heart Presents on Victim Notification at the 2013 National Sexual Assault Conference

At the 2013 National Sexual Assault Conference, Joyful Heart presented a workshop on our research on victim notification and the rape kit backlog, defining victim notification and current practices across the country and walking the audience through the many decisions jurisdictions face when notifying survivors that their rape kits were part of a backlog. They were joined by a panel of experts who have direct experience with notification: Detective James Blocker of the LA Police Department (LAPD), Robert Taylor, Assistant Director of the LA Sheriff's Department (LASD) Crime Lab, and Anne Kinetra, an investigator with the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office.

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