August 25, 2005
MA: New Crime Lab to Clear DNA Backlog?
Massachusetts officials hope that a new crime lab will clear a big backlog of DNA cases. Since at least 1999, Congress has been pouring big money into eliminating the backlog. PL 108-405 (2004), PL 106-546 (2000), PL 106-113 (1999). Yet, the more they spend, the bigger the backlog grows. Why? With more labs and resources, more investigators want their swabs, hats and cigarette butts found at crime scenes tested. The backlog will never go away. We just had someone from an Arizona government crime lab come speak to my class; the analyst said that nothing gets tested except cases coming up for immediate trial, homicides, and possible serial rapes. [Jack Chin]
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