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FY23 Tarrant County Forensic DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction Program

Award Information

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

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $600,000)

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s (TCME) Office is a regional medical examiner’s facility located in Fort Worth, Texas that provides services to Tarrant, Parker, Denton, and Johnson Counties.  These counties represent a core population of approximately three million citizens.  The Medical Examiner’s Office operates a multi-discipline crime laboratory that offers Forensic Biology and DNA analysis. The Forensic Biology/DNA laboratory not only serves the Medical Examiner, District Attorney, and other Tarrant County agencies, but also provides analysis on a fee for service basis to law enforcement agencies throughout Texas. The Department of Justice has allocated funds for the state of Texas and the TCME Crime Laboratory has been requested $600,0000.00 as its share of the formula grant. 

The proposed project would fund salary and fringe benefits for a Sr. Forensic Biologist and a Forensic Biologist to assist in the DNA analysis of casework, purchase Rapid DNA instrument(s) to increase capacity for the upload of suspect samples into CODIS, supplies for the DNA typing of casework, and fund required continuing education for DNA analysts. 

The Federal funding from this award will be used for the following goals and objectives:

Goal 1: Increase the number of CODIS eligible samples analyzed in the forensic DNA laboratory by:

continuing to support the processing of forensic samples for DNA typing via the funding of salary and fringe benefits for a Sr. Forensic Biologist and a Forensic Biologist;
allowing additional typing of crime scene samples with the purchase of required supplies for casework.

Goal 2: Increasing the capacity of the laboratory to carry out DNA analysis and decrease turnaround times for CODIS entry by:

purchasing Rapid DNA instrument(s) for the processing for the processing of FBI QAS allowable samples including CODIS eligible reference samples;
allowing the laboratory to meet requirements for continuing education for DNA analysts by funding meeting attendance for analysts in 2024 and 2025;
Allowing the continuation of work by allocating funding for the external FBI QAS audit in 2025.

Date Created: September 8, 2023