Pima County getting federal grant to help solve sex assaults

Pima County is getting a $2 million federal grant to investigate and prosecute more unsolved sexual assault cases.

The award from the U.S. Department of Justice will be shared by the County Attorney’s Office, the Tucson Police Department and the Pima County Sheriff’s Department.

About $800,000 will go to Tucson police with the department planning to hire two cold-case detectives to investigate cases.

Some of the department’s funds also will be used for further testing on rape kits.

Police Chief Chris Magnus tells the Arizona Daily Star that having more resources focused on cold cases will allow other detectives to keep up with incoming sexual assault cases.

He says the department was able to use a $1 million grant in 2015 to test all its backlogged rape kits.