Crime labs in Florida are facing severe backlogs, as evidence often sits untested for months and police departments are asked to restrict the number of items they send for testing. A request for additional funding to reduce the backlog through increased staffing and training is pending in this year’s state budget.
According to department records, FDLE in 2002 received 75,034 requests for tests and completed 73,539. By 2006, the backlog had increased to 93,138 requests with 80,457 completed.
To speed the process, the agency has hired new personnel, made training available to larger police departments, and asked departments that use the services to limit requests.
"We don't refuse to take anything from anyone," said Barry Funck, director of forensic science for FDLE. "Give us your best five items [agencies are told] rather than backing the truck up and unloading everything here."
Read the full story here
. (Florida Times-Union, 5/22/2007)
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