Recently the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has acquired three automated DNA analyzers that will shorten the time it takes to process samples from crime scenes. In the past, analyzing DNA samples would take up to six months. However, with the new DNA analyzer 100 samples can be analyzed in just a few hours.
All of this was made possible through the Presidentâ€™s DNA Initiative of 2006. The National Institute of Justice has provided more than $107 million in funding that covers a 5-year plan to ensure forensic DNA reaches its full potential to solve crimes, protect the innocent and identify missing persons.
CBI received a $1.2 million in grants from the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) for these machines and was part of a DNA Field Experiment. In collaboration between NIJ and local law enforcement in five communities, Los Angeles, Topeka, Denver, Phoenix and Orange County, CA, were targeted in this effort. In June 2008, NIJ released the results of this study that showed that suspect identifications and arrests doubled, prosecutions doubled, suspects were arrested through DNA identifications were more dangerous because of the number of prior arrests, and that DNA was twice as effective in identifying suspects as compared to fingerprints.
From property crimes to violent crimes, law enforcement now has a very important tool to help solve crimes faster and ensure accuracy for better prosecutions.