Wednesday, 16. January 2013
Earlier, we wrote about the issues plaguing the St. Paul crime lab. Testing was suspended after an investigation revealed sloppy drug-testing procedures within the lab. Now, the city is seeking to reopen the facility, but under a very different brand of management.
Formerly, the lab was run by police sergeants. Now, however, the city is opening up the management position to someone with a scientific background. Candidates must hold a degree in chemistry, biology, biochemistry, or a related field.
The validity of many drug crime evidence samples tested at the lab is still being determined. A judge will decide if the samples are admissible in court. If it is determined otherwise, hundreds of drug cases processed by the crime lab could stand to be overturned.
This is a fascinating story to follow from a criminal defense perspective. The implications of the crime lab fallout could be enormous. Beyond the potential reversal of convictions, crime labs across the country are also likely to be subjected to further scrutiny.