Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $934,421)
Project Goals and Objectives - This application is for Federal assistance for the FY 2015 DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program. Funds are being sought to handle, screen, and/or analyze backlogged forensic DNA casework samples. Overtime salaries and supplies for DNA personnel, the addition of DNA personnel, and the outsourcing of backlogged cases to a qualifying fee-for-service laboratory will be used in accomplishing this task. The SLED DNA Laboratory is an NDIS participant lab in good standing and is eligible to upload appropriate profiles to NDIS. Therefore, the resulting evidence profiles from analysis of these cases will be entered and searched in the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) to assist state and local agencies to ultimately solve crimes.
Funds are being sought to provide continuing education for DNA analysts who will have recently started accepting cases. Educational information and new technologies presented in these training events enhance the labs capabilities in implementing new DNA methodologies and increasing throughput through exposure to novel automation and techniques. Funds will also cover travel expenses associated with site visits to the fee-for-service laboratories that are currently contracted to perform DNA analysis on SLED cases.
This grant will also enable the DNA Casework and Database Laboratories to meet the January 2017 implementation date for the expanded loci amplification kits by funding the expenses associated with outsourcing validation services. Contracting the validation services allows DNA analysts assigned to the laboratory to keep casework duties as a primary responsibility.
While many variables determine the number of backlogged cases, through the use overtime and grant funded personnel internally, and outsourcing validation services and analysis on property crimes externally; SLED expects to reduce the DNA case backlog by the end of the award period. Funding on this award will allow us to analyze a minimum of 137cases using overtime and federally funded supplies; and the analysts funded by this award will have access to overtime funds requested on this award and will work cases as well. Additionally, we anticipate that we will outsource approximately 306 cases using these funds.