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SAKiTA, a Sexual Assault Kit Tracking Application, is a secure data tracking system developed by Marshall University Forensic Science Center (MUFSC) in conjunction with the West Virginia Foundation for Rape Information and Services (FRIS) and the WV State Police (WVSP) Forensic Laboratory. The goal of the data tracking system is to provide feedback for Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) and physicians on the quality of the forensic evidence collected in sexual assault cases.
The WVSP utilizes a quality review form to provide a detailed analysis of each piece of evidence returned in a sex crime evidence collection kit. A numerical value is assigned to each piece of evidence that is analyzed. The total numerical value clearly indicates the quality of the evidence collected in different categories. This allows for a more subjective review of the evidence collected and provides the opportunity to identify potential areas for improvement in evidence collection and training needs. Data report summaries can be generated to provide a more accurate picture of sexual assault in West Virginia. The third phase of SAKiTA, in the development stage, will provide the opportunity for law enforcement and the rape crisis centers to track sexual assault cases as they move through the criminal justice system.
With the data collected from SAKiTA and the opportunity to provide feedback to SANEs and physicians, it is believed that the quality of evidence collected will improve. This will in turn increase the arrest and conviction rates of offenders in West Virginia.