June 5, 2023 5:22 pm

Operations have begun at the Illinois State Police (ISP) agency’s new forensic science laboratory in Decatur, which is anticipated to expand DNA testing capacity.

ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly mentioned, “The new lab will additional minimize backlogs and let us to resolve crimes more quickly and bring justice to all involved.” The lab was accredited final week, which permitted the leased facility to officially open.

The new 4-story ISP Decatur Forensic Science Laboratory positioned along the U.S. Route 51 on the south side of Decatur will supply testing for law enforcement all through the state. Forensic scientists at the laboratory will examine proof collected from crime scenes and analyze biological material to recognize DNA profiles from suspects.

The facility is the state’s seventh forensics lab and will also residence Crime Scene Solutions.

According to the ISP, backlogs in testing for trace chemistry, drug chemistry, latent prints, firearms, toxicology, and footwear have all decreased by around 37% considering the fact that 2021.

“This leading-tier facility will improve capacity to considerably minimize turnaround time for DNA testing, create speedy outcomes, and additional minimize the case backlog,” mentioned Gov. JB Pritzker.

In June final year, the state had no pending sexual assault kits older than 180 days, which marked the 1st time the agency was in a position to comply with the 2010 law aimed at eliminating the backlog. Now, Illinois State Police say the typical turn-about-time for a DNA case to be completed is three.six months.

The ISP laboratory technique processes proof from criminal instances in seven disciplines: drug chemistry, trace chemistry, toxicology, biology/DNA, latent prints, firearms/toolmarks, and footwear/tire tracks.

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