SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow today announced $844,543 in Department of Justice grants to the Puerto Rico Forensic Sciences Institute (Instituto de Ciencias Forenses) to fund crime laboratories, decrease DNA backlogs, support basic and applied forensic research, and help law enforcement identify missing persons. The grants, awarded by the Department’s Office of Justice Programs, are part of $192 million in funding to advance forensic science nationwide.
“Developments in forensic science have given investigators an extraordinary array of tools that can be enlisted to solve crimes and bring answers to victims and survivors, often after many years and even decades,” said OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “These investments in crime-fighting technology, from DNA analysis to drug toxicology to forensic anthropology, will help identify and convict perpetrators, ensure justice for innocent victims and keep communities safe by deterring future criminal activity.”
“The Department of Justice remains committed to advancing the use of forensic science and continues to make important recommendations in this integral component of our criminal justice system. Today’s announcement marks yet another step forward in the department’s efforts to strengthen the practice of forensic science in our nation’s laboratories and courtrooms,” said U.S. Attorney Muldrow. “We are continually looking at ways to ensure that forensic evidence is collected, analyzed and presented in a responsible and scientifically rigorous manner. This grant money provides additional resources to an important and valued partner in our ongoing efforts to reduce crime in Puerto Rico – the Puerto Rico Forensic Sciences Institute.”
Since 2004, the Office of Justice Programs has received an annual appropriation for DNA and other forensic science activities. The funding, administered through OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and National Institute of Justice, supports DNA analysis, laboratory capacity enhancement and forensic science research that provides knowledge and tools to improve the quality and practice of forensic science.
# # #