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Dr. Rachel Lovell Publishes Book, “Sexual Assault Kits and Reforming the Response to Rape”

Dr. Rachel Lovell, Assistant Professor of Criminology and Director of the Criminology Research Center in CSU’s Levin College of Public Affairs and Education (Levin), has co-edited the soon-to-be-released book, Sexual Assault Kits and Reforming the Response to Rape. This book is the first to address the most critical topics related to untested sexual assault kits and the Department of Justice’s Sexual Assault Kit Initiative, bringing together leading US scholars, practitioners, policymakers, and survivors. 

Dr. Lovell, an applied criminologist and methodologist whose research focuses on gender-based violence and victimization, particularly sexual assault, human trafficking, and intimate partner violence, co-edited the book with Dr. Jennifer Langhinrichsen-Rohling, a professor in the Department of Psychological Science at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. 

Sexual Assault Kits and Reforming the Response to Rape curates the current state of untested sexual assault kit research and highlights emerging best practices by exploring the past, the present, and the future of our collective response to rape. In a series of well-researched and thoughtful thematic chapters, the book explores the current state of knowledge related to untested kits, survivors, and perpetrators while documenting fundamental and necessary changes in how societal systems respond to rape. It provides an opportunity to learn from our past, highlight what we could do differently now, and envision a better future for victims of rape and those tasked with ensuring justice. It may also serve as a cautionary tale for those jurisdictions that have yet to face their backlog or who have failed to embrace the practice and policy changes that have emerged from the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative.

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