14-Year-Old Rape Kit, Finally Tested, Leads to Arrest of Ex-Cop

Sunday, September 14, 2014

This is why rape kits, evidence gathered following a rape, should never be thrown away.


Rape victims in Memphis, Tennessee, have to wait a long time for justice. The city’s police department has more than a decade-long backlog of untested rape kits. But when they get around to processing a kit, it can point to a surprising suspect.


A former Memphis police officer has been charged in a rape that occurred in 2000. Bridges Randle, who has been living in Atlanta under an assumed name, was arrested after a kit that had gone untested for 14 years was finally put into the national database.


Investigators say police responded to a domestic violence call on June 24, 2000. Later that day a man posing as an investigator returned, and according to the complaint, raped the victim.

Randle left the Memphis department the following year and became an administrator for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Atlanta.


The Memphis Area Women’s Council told WMC News that there are still 7,000 untested rape kits in police custody. “We’ve been working very hard to get through this backlog and to make sure all of these kits get tested and get the results we have today,” District Attorney Amy Weirich said.


The city was sued last year by a rape victim because her kit still hadn’t been tested after 12 years and her attacker went on to rape other women. The suit asserted that the Memphis Police Department “treats domestic violence abuse reports from women with less priority than other crimes not involving women reporting domestic violence abuse.”


The Department of Justice estimates that nationwide there are about 100,000 untested rape kits, as well as evidence that has not yet been sent to labs for analysis.

-Steve Straehley


To Learn More:

Rape Kit Testing Helps Indict Former MPD Officer In a 2000 Rape (by Jason Miles, WMC)

Tested After 14 Years, Rape Kit Incriminates Ex-Memphis Cop Who Now Works At Kids Home (by David Edwards, Raw Story)

10-Year Backlog of 12,000 Untested Rape Kits in Memphis May Have Resulted in More Rapes (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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