Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $1,500,000)
The Office of the Attorney General of Virginia, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Forensic Science and the Virginia Department of State Police, is seeking $1,499,999 in funding under Purpose Area 4 to reduce the number of unresolved violent crime cold cases in Virginia. The primary focus of this proposal is to support investigation and prosecution of high volumes of cold case sexual assaults and sexually motivated homicides, which will help law enforcement and prosecutors around the state address challenges associated with unresolved violent crime cold cases and improve the criminal justice response to sexual assault.
The project will focus on several primary activities, including accurate sexual assault kit data entry, intelligence analysis to increase the number of solved cases, advanced DNA testing to identify and apprehend serial offenders, victim-centered notification and advocacy, and trauma-informed cold case reviews and investigation trainings. These activities aim to bring more perpetrators to justice, improve the system response for victims, increase public safety, and enable closure and healing for the victims of solved cold cases and their loved ones.
The grant will be distributed among the Virginia Department of Forensic Science, the Virginia Department of State Police, and DNA Labs International, who will work collaboratively to achieve these goals. The beneficiaries of this project are law enforcement officers, detectives, prosecutors, victims, and their families.