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Previous research has addressed the logistical and structural factors that contributed to the backlog. This research brief approaches this issue from a different perspective—focusing instead on the Cuyahoga County Sexual Assault Kit Task Force (Task Force) members’ perceptions of the reasons for the backlog. We detail in the brief perceptions of what created the backlog, which provides an important glimpse into what was not working about the process according to Task Force members. Through their analyses and critiques, we can observe the shifts in culture and practice that have occurred, due in part to the passage of time and larger societal changes, but mainly derive from Task Force member’s participation in this specialized Task Force created to address the backlog.


sexual violence, sexual assault kits, Cuyahoga County (Ohio)


Criminology and Criminal Justice

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Perceptions of Why the Sexual Assault Kit Backlog Exists in Cuyahoga County, Ohio and Recommendations for Improving Practice