Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $250,004)
The Richland County Sheriff’s Department is currently seeking funds to enhance its capacity for DNA analysis through the DNA Backlog Reduction Program Formula Grant FY 2021. With the implementation of this grant, the following goals will be achieved; reduction of backlogged DNA cases and increase laboratory capacity with the objective of an overall reduction in violent and nonviolent crimes in Richland County through a continuation of current analyst throughput (44 samples/month). Without the grant-funded re-employment of the full time analyst and the full time technician, laboratory case throughput will be reduced by approximately 30 percent. The project plan/method is to utilize the grant-funded full time analyst and full time technician along with the two county-funded full time DNA analysts and existing laboratory infrastructure to enhance casework capabilities. Funds will be used to purchase new thermal mixers, ductless fume hood, a Tru Allele workstation and an analytical balance in order to decrease case turnaround time and maximize efficiency. Annual training for the DNA Analysts will allow for required continuing education.