The Austin Police Department is closing for most of the rest of the year, as it revamps its system of DNA analysis, according to officials.
The shutdown will last four to six months, and will involve new training, certification, re-certification, auditing, and the hiring of a new lab director, Chief Art Acevedo announced at a Friday press conference.
“We decided to initiate a cease of operations,” the chief told reporters. “The Texas Forensic Science Commission identified some concerns for us.”
The Austin laboratory has been used extensively to analyze trace DNA, even in property-crime cases, Acevedo said.
While it is temporarily closed, the existing prosecutions will be “triaged.” The criminal cases which are time sensitive and can’t be handled by the Texas Department of Public Safety labs will be contracted out to private labs, Acevedo said.
read more at Forensic Magazine.