CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

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Sunday, January 15, 2006

Utah: State Crime Lab Eliminates Gunshot Residue Testing

Add the Utah State Crime Lab to the list of underfunded, struggling state crime labs.  The lab has recently eliminated gunshot residue testing, in order to concentrate on DNA, fingerprint, and ballistics analyses.  Although GSR testing only shows the presence or lack of nitrates, not necessarily who fired a gun, the elimination of GSR testing is cause for concern among Utah defense attorneys; they emphasize that sentencing drastically differs for the triggerman and the accomplice in a shooting.  On the other hand, GSR testing has been criticized as junk science here and here. [Mark Godsey]   

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