NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans police say they're working through a backlog of more than 400 untested rape kits. The kits are important elements in an investigation, especially when a victim is attacked by a stranger and DNA is essential.

Disclosure about the untested rape kits came during a New Orleans City Council hearing Thursday that delved into the failings of the police department's handling of rapes and child abuse.

In November, a scathing city inspector general's report found that five detectives in the sex crimes unit failed to do substantial investigation on more than 1,000 sex crimes and child abuse cases between 2011 and 2013.

New Orleans police are working to institute changes laid out in a wide-ranging federal consent decree.

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