PERK kit backlog testing project leads to guilty plea from Spotsylvania man

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Dyron R. Williams, Sr., 26, of Spotsylvania County, pleaded guilty to child abuse and neglect after being identified and charged as part of Attorney General Mark Herring’s PERK kit testing project.

Williams, who is currently incarcerated on separate charges, was sentenced to five years, with three years, six months suspended, to run consecutively with his current sentence.

This is the first conviction resulting from Herring’s PERK backlog elimination project.

Williams was charged in November after being identified from DNA in a PERK kit collected in 2012 that was tested as part of Herring’s project to eliminate Virginia’s rape kit backlog.

The DNA profile developed from the kit was uploaded to the national DNA database and identified Williams as the source of the DNA. Williams was served with warrants for his current charges at the Caroline Correctional Unit, where he had been incarcerated for unrelated charges.

“This case shows why we worked so hard to eliminate Virginia’s backlog and test every single PERK kit,” Herring said. “Testing these kits and entering the DNA into the national database help law enforcement identify suspects, link crimes committed by unknown or known suspects, make our communities safer, and hold individuals who commit these heinous crimes accountable. I’m really proud that my team and I were able to play a role in helping to bring this individual to justice.”

“I am pleased with the progress on all the untested kits particularly with the case involving Dyron Williams. The dedication of the office and Detective P. Harper shows that these victims will never be forgotten,” Spotsylvania Sheriff Roger Harris said.

Last month, Herring announced the completion of his project to eliminate Virginia’s rape kit backlog. As part of Herring’s initiative, 2,665 previously untested rape kits have been tested, including kits that had gone untested for decades.

According to End the Backlog, a National initiative advocating for changes in the way PERKs are handled, Virginia is just the seventh state in the country to eliminate its rape kit backlog.

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