In The News


2015-01-05 | Whalen expert critical of state DNA testing
In an opinion filed recently in McLean County Court Court, Reich said the state police crime lab lacks "the procedures, background or frankly the willingness, to take real-world considerations into account" in post-conviction analysis work. "The procedures, methods, approaches, analysis and guidelines used by ISP were developed well over 15 years ago and were designed to address simple cases with large amounts of easily accessible biological evidence," Reich argued.

2015-01-03 | Crime lab backlog, scheduling issues stall local murder cases
A trial and a plea deal last month whittled High Point prosecutors’ list of recent pending murder cases to five, with seven defendants — five men and two women — still awaiting trial in 2012-14 killings.

2014-12-24 | New Orleans Police: Many Rape Kits Just in Storage
The untested rape kits were disclosed during a New Orleans City Council hearing Thursday that examined failings in the department's handling of rapes and child abuse. They can be important elements in an investigation, especially when a victim is attacked by a stranger and DNA is essential. "We are committed to clearing the backlog of sexual assault kits that require testing once and for all and we are actively putting systems of accountability in place to ensure it never happens again," Harrison said in a statement.

2014-12-24 | DNA review finds killer of two women in 1980s
With the help of advanced DNA testing, law enforcement officials have solved the 1983 murder of a young woman in Massachusetts and the 1987 murder of a woman in New Hampshire, and determined that the killer was the same man in both cases, they announced Tuesday.

2014-12-19 | F.B.I. Evidence Often Mishandled, Inquiry Finds
The evidence collection and retention system is the backbone of the F.B.I.'s investigative process, and the report said it is beset by problems. It also found that the F.B.I. was storing more weapons, less money and valuables, and two tons more drugs than its records had indicated.

2014-12-17 | Embattled St. Paul police crime lab earns accreditation
"This accomplishment is a testament to the exceptional work of our lab manager and our lab staff," said Assistant Police Chief Kathy Wuorinen, who oversees the unit, in a statement Wednesday. "... The public can have complete confidence that our lab provides the highest level of service and precision that comes from merging the worlds of law enforcement and science."

2014-12-17 | Pileup at the Morgue
Sammarco ticks off a laundry list of problems the office has been struggling with for the past few years: too little space; too little staff; vehicles so old they’re sometimes out on maintenance when they’re needed to pick up bodies; pipes full of autopsy debris backing up under the building; body coolers and ventilation equipment malfunctioning.

2014-12-17 | Once-troubled St. Paul police crime lab gains accreditation
The city of St. Paul spent $1 million to upgrade equipment and lab space and make improvements in the unit, located on the third floor of the Police Department’s main offices at the east edge of downtown. The unit now has more forensic lights, new cameras, cyanoacrylate fuming chambers and a Reflective Ultra Violet Imaging System. The Forensics Services Unit collects evidence, photographs and documents crime scenes, conducts blood testing, collects DNA and trace evidence, processes and compares latent fingerprints, develops and compares footprints and tire tracks and documents crime scene measurements.

2014-12-16 | Forensic Lab Clears Backlog, Improves Response Time
Police said they had gotten used to yearslong response times on evidence and DNA processing. Now the average is down to 60 days.

2014-12-12 | Huddersfield University's breakthrough could help catch note fakers - find out how here
The article explains: “In cases such as fraud or counterfeiting it can be imperative to know whether a fingerprint has been deposited before or after the paper is printed with compromising material and therefore be able to assess whether a suspect is associated with the printed evidence.”

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