Did You Know...? Monthly Newsletter Issue 2, 2014
From the Office of Alameda County District Attorney
Nancy E. O'Malley

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To review and prosecute criminal violations of the laws, to protect consumers and the environment and to support and protect victims of crime within the County on behalf of the people of the State of California.

AB1517 to Address California's Rape Kit Backlog
DA Nancy O'Malley (left) stands with Asm. Nancy Skinner and Asm. Rob Bonta (right)
In mid-January, DA O'Malley and Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) announced legislation to address the backlog of untested rape kits languishing in law enforcement agencies and forensic labs in California. AB 1517 would specify timelines for testing rape kits and entering DNA profile information into the Combined DNA Index System, a national database.

"This legislation will provide justice to survivors of sexual assault by testing evidence collected during an invasive physical examination and using that evidence to capture and prosecute their assailants," stated District Attorney O'Malley. "As District Attorney of Alameda County, I am dedicated to working with law enforcement to eliminate the rape kit backlog in this county. Our efforts must also address the backlog throughout the State and the Nation and this legislation serves as a vital step towards that goal."
Working with Federal Officials to Eliminate the Backlog
DA O'Malley & Rep. Eric Swalwell discussing legislation to Eliminate the Backlog
During the month of February, the District Attorney's Office made huge strides in its efforts to put an end to the DNA rape kit backlog. In early February, DA O'Malley traveled to Washington D.C. and met with government officials to discuss strategies aimed at eliminating the backlog of untested rape kits. Productive meetings were held with Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA15), Congressman Mike Honda's Office (D-CA17), Congresswoman Karen Bass' Office (D-CA37) , Senator Diane Feinstein's Office (D-CA), and Lynne Rosenthal, White House Advisor of Violence Against Women, Office of the Vice President.

February 27, 2014
DA O'Malley met with the Director of the FBI, James Comey, and other law enforcement leaders in San Francisco to discuss the on-going work being done for public safety. At the meeting, she was able to provide Director Comey, and other law enforcement officials around the Bay Area, with information about two initiatives, "Eliminate The Backlog" and " H.E.AT. Watch -the Blueprint and Toolkit".
DA O'Malley Leads Multi-Agency Collaboration:
100 Rape Kits Immediately Shipped for Testing
On Feb. 25, the first 100 DNA rape kits collected from the Berkeley Police Department and the Hayward Police Department were packaged for overnight shipping to Bode Labs in Virginia, where testing will begin. In 2012, Alameda County estimated the backlog of untested rape kits to be 1,900.

The rape kit send-off was the result of a larger partnership with Natasha's Justice Project, Bode Technology, and multiple law enforcement agencies within Alameda County. This is a huge milestone for all parties involved!
Recent Verdicts & Other Headline News
*   On February 5, 2014 a jury convicted defendant Octavio Vivano of four counts of Forcible Rape in Concert, one count of Kidnapping for Rape, and one count of Assault with Force Likely to Cause Great Bodily Injury. On July 15, 2000, Jane Doe was walking down 33rd and Market St. in Oakland when a Camaro approached her from behind. Jane Doe was struck on the side of the face and two men forced her into the waiting Camaro. The car drove to a remote location in the Oakland Hills where Jane Doe was forcibly raped by four males. After the males raped Ms. Doe, they threw her out of the car and drove away. In 2009, the Oakland Police Department linked the defendant to the rape through DNA. Ms. Doe identified the defendant as the driver of the car. The case was prosecuted by DDA Neil Layton with assistance from DA Inspector Simon Rhee.

For a full description of all felony and misdemeanor verdicts,  please visit our website.
February 20th
D.A.'s Office Announces $6.8 Million Judgment
Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O'Malley announced that internet retailer Overstock.com, Inc., has been found liable for violating California's false advertising law.  See details here.
February 27th
DA O'Malley Leads Human Trafficking Panel

The League of Women Voters of Alameda
hosted a Human Trafficking Panel with Jeffrey E. Tsai, Special Asst. Attorney General, Josie Camacho, Alameda Labor Council, and Jadma Noronha, the Sage Project.
Do you have a question for the District Attorney's Office?
The District Attorney's Office receives many calls and e-mails from the public asking a wide variety of questions. Please feel free to e-mail a question of your own that you would like to see answered here.

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