Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $312,708)
The Wyoming State Crime Laboratory (WSCL) is the only accredited forensic crime laboratory in the State of Wyoming. The WSCL is accredited to ISO 17025:2017 and AR 3125 standards through the ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB). All services provided by the laboratory are performed with no cost to submitting agencies. The WSCL’s accredited scope includes testing in the forensic subdisciplines of biology/DNA, drug chemistry, firearms/toolmarks, latent prints, and toxicology. There are currently no other laboratories in Wyoming capable of providing confirmatory drug analysis in toxicology cases. The WSCL has experienced challenges in continuing to address the increasing demand for analysis while also attempting to expand services in the toxicology and chemistry units. Much progress has been made toward validating and implementing new confirmatory drug methods in toxicology; however, the opioid class of drugs, including fentanyl, still needs validated and implemented. Validation of each respective confirmatory drug class has been prioritized proportionally to the frequency of which they are observed in the toxicology drug screening process.Â The drug chemistry unit has been challenged with a continuously increasing demand for services and a shift in the types of drugs submitted for analysis, particularly with respect to large increases in fentanyl-containing submissions.
The funds from this grant will be used to expand the validated methods for toxicology’s confirmatory drug analysis, provide support to toxicology and drug chemistry analysis through consumable supplies, support the WSCL through maintaining certified/calibrated instrumentation, and address increases in requests for analysis while working to decrease turnaround time by providing overtime for forensic analysts.