This morning, I joined State Attorney Melissa Nelson, Sheriff MIke Williams and law enforcement professionals from throughout the country at the 2019 Sexual Assault Kit Initiative Assembly of Cities conference in downtown Jacksonville.
We are fortunate to have two amazing leaders in law enforcement: State Attorney Melissa Nelson and Sheriff Mike Williams. Both are dedicated public servants that have made this Sexual Assault Kit Initiative a priority in our community.
Sexual assault and abuse affects all of us: victims, families, neighbors, citizens and city leaders. Studies show that 1 in 5 women and 1 in 67 men in the U.S. have experienced rape or attempted rape. And that’s just in reported cases. The real number could be much higher.
And the effects of these heinous crime last far beyond the initial occurrence and extend beyond the victim and perpetrator, affecting friends, family and more.
The problem is real, but I am inspired to see so many in our community and throughout the nation focused on learning best practices, how to improve responses to sexual violence, and bring offenders to justice.
The three-day conference provides comprehensive presentations and sessions which cover topics from genetic genealogy, lawfully owed DNA, cold case investigation, and media concerns.
I was happy to host the conference in our city, showcasing the strides we have made as a community toward better addressing these crimes.