Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $293,954)
Idaho State Police Forensic Services (ISPFS) provides forensic services for 1.6 million people in the state of Idaho. There has been a 27% increase in controlled substance (CS) cases finished in Idaho in the last five years. ISPFS recently achieved ISO 17025:2017 accreditation status for the breath alcohol instrument calibration program. As a result, the frequency of calibrations required for each instrument has increased, dramatically increasing the workload of the discipline scientists. In addition, all calibrations must be done in the forensic services laboratory, increasing the travel time to pick up instruments and drop them off after calibration has been completed. A technician is needed to keep up with the workload in the discipline. ISPFS will use Coverdell funds to continue employment of two contract Chemistry/Controlled Substance Analysts and one Breath Alcohol Technician to manage the increase in casework and instrument calibrations state-wide.
ISPFS will also provide assistance to the Canyon County Crime Laboratory to pursue ISO 17025:2017 accreditation in 2023. This is the final crime laboratory in Idaho that is not accredited. Idaho would be one of the first states in the country with every traditional forensic science laboratory in the state being accredited. In addition, ISPFS will commit funds to a contractor to support accreditation preparation for Canyon County and also the ISPFS Crime Scene, Digital Evidence, and Document Examination disciplines.
The outcome is to get casework done and maintain current turnaround times as casework continues to increase in these disciplines.