Crapo, Risch Lead Resolution Acknowledging Forensics Vital Role In Justice System

Washington, DC–The US Senate unanimously passed a Senate resolution designating September 18-24, 2022 as National Forensic Science Week. The resolution, introduced by US Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and co-sponsored by US Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), recognizes the role that forensic science plays in the investigation, prosecution, conviction and exoneration of crimes the innocent.

“Forensics plays a critical role in the proper functioning of our justice system,” said Crapo. “The Senate’s unanimous endorsement of this resolution recognizes the essential contribution of these specially trained scientists to bringing justice to victims and exonerating those wrongly accused.”

“As a former prosecutor, I have seen firsthand how important findings in forensic science can exonerate the innocent, identify criminals and close victims.” said Risch. “I am proud to honor and recognize the important work that forensic scientists do for our justice system.”

“National Forensic Science Week is an opportunity to recognize the outstanding work of forensic science professionals who work hard every day to identify perpetrators of crimes, exonerate the innocent, and solve cases for the criminal justice system and victims of crime.” said Matthew Gamette, chief of the Idaho State Police forensic laboratory system. “We appreciate the support and recognition of Congress, and particularly our Idaho Senators and their staff, for the hard work these scientists and physicians do every day in Idaho and throughout the United States. National Forensic Science Week is a great time to focus on the growing financial and human resources needs of the forensic science community, to talk about further advancing science and technology, and to reward those who are doing this important work.

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Read the full text of the resolution HERE and under.

Whereas, the Senate is committed to the use of forensic science in the investigation of crimes, the prosecution and conviction of the correct perpetrators of crimes, and the exoneration of innocent persons falsely accused of a crime in the United States;

whereas forensic science providers address critical issues in civil and criminal investigations and trials in the United States, including by providing scientific reasoning related to forensic evidence;

While providers of forensic science services collaborate with –

(1) federal agencies to establish and maintain criminal databases relating to latent fingerprints, DNA and other information relevant to criminal matters; and 2

(2) federal, state, and local public safety agencies;

whereas forensic science providers play an important role in the criminal justice system by providing scientific information to investigators and court officials; and

While the fourth week of September 2022 is recognized as “National Forensic Science Week”: So be it now

Decided that the Senate—

(1) supports the goals and ideals of National Forensic Science Week; and

(2) Recognizes that National Forensic Science Week provides a special opportunity for –

(A) forensic service providers for –

(i) Recognizing the contributions of forensic scientists in the laboratories in which these individuals work;

(ii) organize community events to promote a better understanding of forensic science;

(iii) Provide tours for federal, state and local policy makers to help those individuals gain better insight into the current capabilities of forensic science service providers and the future needs faced by forensic science service providers will; and

(iv) contact and invite local media to cover events hosted during National Forensic Science Week;

(B) local policy makers to—

(i) recognize, through formal commendation or resolution, the contributions of local forensic science laboratories to the communities of these policymakers;

(ii) to officially proclaim the fourth week of September 2022 as “National Forensic Science Week”;

(iii) visit local forensic laboratories to assess the capabilities and needs of those laboratories; and

(iv) Discussing the operational needs of state and local forensic laboratories18


(C) persons in the United States, including members of the media, to –

(i) participation in community events sponsored by local forensic laboratories;

(ii) take tours of local forensic laboratories; and

(iii) ask local forensic laboratories about the operational and legal requirements of those laboratories;

(D) members of the media to highlight local news focused on the work of local forensic science labs in the communities that those labs serve; and

(E) Public security officials, law enforcement officials and court officials

(i) participation in community events sponsored by local forensic laboratories;

(ii) take tours of local forensic laboratories;

(iii) discussing the operational needs of state and local forensic laboratories; and

(iv) Engage with local forensic science laboratories for more effective collaboration.

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