Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $922,506)
As part of this program, the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) has allocated $5,498,173 to the
State of Florida. Based on data obtained from the 2020 Florida Uniform Crime Report (UCR),
the Miami-Dade Police Department (MDPD) Forensic Services Bureau (FSB) has been offered
$922,506. The FSB proposes to use these funds to continue to increase the laboratory's capacity
to analyze DNA samples, reduce the DNA sample turnaround time, and reduce the number of
backlogged DNA cases awaiting analysis.
The MDPD FSB will fund seven positions with this award. Three Criminalists will process
cases submitted to the Forensic Biology Section (FBS) including both serological and DNA
analysis. Two Police Property Evidence Specialists (PPES) will also be funded by this award.
One PPES will manage the flow of evidence within the FBS and the other will enhance case
documentation by photographing evidence packages upon submission to the laboratory.
Additionally, two Police Crime Scene Technicians (PCST) will perform FBS daily tasks such as
reagent preparation, monitoring levels of inventory, cleaning glassware, instrument maintenance
and case folder retrieval in addition to the receiving/stocking of all supplies, consumables and
The FSB has been able to nearly eliminate its backlog of forensic biology/DNA cases awaiting
analysis. Overtime funding provided by the Forensic DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog
Reduction (CEBR) Program has been critical to this success. In order to manage current and
future case analysis requests in a timely manner, overtime funding from this CEBR award will be
utilized to process the portion of DNA cases that cannot be processed during the regular 40-hour
Funds are also requested to purchase one new QIAcube instrument for automated DNA
differential extraction of evidence items that contain sperm cells. Additionally, funds are being
requested for travel to national DNA conferences to satisfy continuing education requirements,
as well as for court testimony transcripts for the purpose of biannual evaluations of FBS
The FSB has identified these project goals and has formulated a detailed plan to accomplish
these goals. Ultimately, through funding from this award, the FSB will be able to increase its
capacity to analyze DNA cases in a timely manner. This funding will generate more DNA
profiles for CODIS entry which will aid more investigations, thus contributing to the safety of
Miami-Dade County’s residents.
- Emmett Till Cold Case Investigations and Prosecution Program
- FY2022 Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grant Program - Formula
- Proposal to Support Forensic Pathology Fellowships in the King County Medical Examiner's Office Using BJA Grant: Strengthening the Medical Examiner Coroner System Program