RFID Technology Improves Evidence Management in Crime Labs

RFID for crime labsRegular viewers of the hit TV show “CSI,” as well as forensics professionals, are aware of the importance of DNA and other evidence in solving crimes. A single piece of evidence can implicate or absolve suspects, as well as move investigators toward a closed case. Crime lab specialists, prosecutors and defense lawyers all realize that with criminal evidence, there is no room for error.

Recognizing this, Alien Technology® provided an RFID (radio frequency identification) solution to track evidence within a crime lab in Santa Clara, California. Adapting its conventional use as an inventory management tool, evidence is tagged with an Alien RFID Squiggle® tag and a bar code (as a backup to the RFID system) prior to its placement in the property room. RFID readers are located in the major passageways of the lab, and the tracking system links to the lab’s computerized database.

With the RFID tags in place, on plastic bags containing small shards of evidence through blood vials and large objects such as vehicles, the web-based inventory can easily be tracked and monitored. The result is increased turn-around time, accessibility of the evidence to authorized personnel, and, of course, a technology trail of “chain of custody” allowing a fast check-in/check-out of the evidence and tracking of everyone who handled the evidence and the time and date of the exchange. According to Benny Del Re, Crime Laboratory Director in Santa Clara County, this lab was the first in the nation to employ the RFID technology. He noted that the lab has experienced 100 percent accuracy in evidence tracking since its implementation.

GlobalOptions Group has also developed a forensic DNA analysis and solutions unit, Bode Technology, which uses RFID to improve efficiency, accuracy and security of crime lab evidence and case folders, from point of collection through final processing. Barry Watson, CEO of Bode Technology stated in a May 2010 release, “Our RFID solutions will become important components to assist and advance law enforcement and identification agencies in determining and administering justice.”

By tracking evidence from crime scene to courtroom, RFID technology can improve the overall efficiency, accuracy and security of forensic analysis and evidence inventory control.

About Alien Technology:

Alien Technology, founded in 1994 and headquartered in Morgan Hill, CA, provides UHF Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) products and services to customers in retail, consumer goods, manufacturing, defense, transportation and logistics, pharmaceuticals and other industries. Alien's products include RFID tags, RFID readers and related training and professional services. For more information, please visit www.alientechnology.com.

About Bode Technology Group:

Bode Technology Group, Inc serves the law enforcement and identification markets and is unique in providing both state-of-the-art human DNA analysis and innovative DNA collection products. Bode offers worldwide DNA analysis services, consulting, training, and validation services on a customized basis. For more information see www.bodetech.com.

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