SLIFF 2017 – Rape Kit Documentary I AM EVIDENCE Screens November 8th at The St. Louis International Film Festival
I AM EVIDENCE screens Wednesday, November 8th at 6:30pm at The Plaza Frontenac Theater (1701 S Lindbergh Blvd # 210) as part of this year’s St. Louis International Film Festival. Co-director Trish Adlesic and subject Kym L. Worthy, prosecutor of Wayne County, Michigan will be in attendance. This screening is sponsored by “Culture Shock”: A Film Series for Helping Kids Together and by Safe Connections. Ticket information can be found HERE.
After an unthinkable crime, followed by an unimaginable and degrading test, it’s heartbreaking to think that the only evidence that could put your rapist behind bars is left to collect dust on a shelf or worse, be destroyed entirely. Yet for thousands upon thousands of victims of rape, primarily women, who have had the ability, wherewithal and courage to endure the process of reporting the assault and then submitting their battered bodies to an invasive and often traumatizing evidence collection, this is the repeat violation. The documentary I AM EVIDENCE, directed by Trish Adlesic and Geeta Gandbhir, centers around the tens of thousands of rape kits across this country that sit in a backlog, going untested, because, according to various officials in law enforcement and the judicial system, there is a lack of resources available to test them, both financial and human. Others say that victims’ reports never make their way to a prosecutor because the responding officer(s) didn’t believe the victim’s story, either due to her behavior or some other perceived lack of credibility.
A powerful indictment of the criminal-justice system’s seeming indifference to the crime of rape, I AM EVIDENCE exposes the shockingly large number of untested rape kits in the United States today. Despite the power of DNA to solve and prevent crimes, hundreds of thousands of kits containing potentially crucial DNA evidence languish untested in police evidence storage rooms across the country. Behind each of these kits lies an individual’s unresolved sexual-assault case. Produced by “Law & Order: SVU’s” Mariska Hargitay — who also appears in the documentary — I AM EVIDENCE tells the stories of survivors who have waited years for their kits to be tested and chronicles the efforts of the law-enforcement officials who are leading the charge to work through the backlog and pursue long-awaited justice in these cases. The film reveals the high cost of the lingering lassitude surrounding rape investigations in this country, and the positive effects of treating survivors with the respect they deserve.