Ohio coroner stops accepting Cincinnati sexual assault cases


CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio coroner says she will no longer accept sexual assault cases from Cincinnati, citing a backload of 566 cases.

Dr. Lakshmi Sammarco sent a letter to the Cincinnati Police Department June 6 saying the Hamilton County coroner’s office is returning about 70 sexual assault cases.

The police chief then sent a letter to the city manager, saying staff will now deliver rape kits to the state lab in London, Ohio.

City Manager Harry Black says there will be “significant delays” due to the “sudden and unexpected disruption.” However, Sammarco says her decision will actually speed up testing.

Mayor John Cranley supported Sammarco’s decision Wednesday, saying the change does not compromise victims’ rights to obtain justice.

Sammarco says her officer will reevaluate its caseload at the end of the year.