By Jimmy Lee, Director of Public Affairs, Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff
The Forensic Services Division of the Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff was awarded $376,101 in grant funding from the federal Bureau of Justice Assistance DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction Program.
The grant will allow for the hiring of a forensic analyst and the purchase of new instrumentation and equipment. This will increase the capacity to process more DNA samples, thereby helping to reduce the number of forensic DNA and DNA database samples awaiting analysis and to prevent a backlog of forensic and database DNA samples, like those collected at crime scenes.
“This grant from the Bureau of Justice Assistance will increase our capacity and help us better serve law enforcement agencies and crime victims,” said Contra Costa County Sheriff David Livingston. “This will increase our efficiency of testing and enable us to provide quicker results to law enforcement and prosecutors on DNA cases in Contra Costa County.”
The Forensic Services Division hopes to hire a new forensic analyst by the end of the year.
The Bureau of Justice Assistance, a division of the U.S. Department of Justice, helps to make American communities safer by strengthening the nation’s criminal justice system: Its grants, training and technical assistance, and policy development services provide state, local, and tribal governments with the cutting edge tools and best practices they need to reduce violent and drug-related crime, support law enforcement, and combat victimization.