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FY 22 DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) Program - St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office (Indian River Crime Laboratory)

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $265,303)

The Indian River Crime Laboratory (IRCL) services the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit of Florida.  Several challenges that have hampered and/or are anticipated to hamper the improvement in capacity and turnaround time were identified and are listed below.  The purpose of this proposed project is to alleviate these challenges.

Non-casework laboratory and administrative activities divert analyst resources away from processing DNA samples.

Maintaining an analyst funded by previous CEBR awards will continue to help alleviate this diversion.  The analyst will assist in non-casework laboratory and administrative activities, which is expected to help maintain the increased capacity to process samples.

Limited space in the DNA analysis batch process hinders efficiency.

Implementing a second DNA extraction instrument and working towards implementation of a Rapid DNA Analysis instrument will help streamline the DNA analysis process and, therefore, is expected to increase efficiency and reduce turnaround time.

Limited countertop/table space is anticipated to hinder efficiency.

In an effort to increase capacity and reduce the turnaround time, the IRCL has been working towards the implementation of several new instruments.  After taking inventory of current table and countertop space appropriate for instrumentation, the IRCL has determined that obtaining an additional table will help the laboratory layout be better for efficiency. 

Because the Biology Section includes only four case-working analysts, projects meant to implement new technologies and processes noticeably divert analyst resources away from casework.

Traveling to conferences brings new ideas to the IRCL and helps analysts better ensure success at proposed projects.  This will help the IRCL work towards improvement in capacity and turnaround time while minimizing disruption during the process.

CODIS-participating laboratories must be accredited.

Completing an external, full, on-site assessment and Quality Assurance Standards audit will help the IRCL maintain accreditation status and remain eligible to upload DNA profiles into CODIS.

Finally, IRCL staff will travel to the annual forensic workshop.  Using CEBR funds for this travel will help ensure the above proposed project can be completed, as this travel was not in the IRCL’s budget.

The proposed approaches to these challenges are detailed in the Proposal Narrative of this application, including a list of the goals and objectives.  Itemized costs associated with this proposal can be found in the web-based budget documentation.

Date Created: September 23, 2022