Audit says OSP crime labs must boost efficiency

The backlog has nearly doubled in 10 years

Oregon State Police headquarters in Salem, Ore. (Google)
Oregon State Police headquarters in Salem, Ore. (Google)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – The backlog of untested forensic evidence at the Oregon State Police’s five crime laboratories has nearly doubled over the past 10 years.

The finding was included in a state audit released Tuesday by Secretary of State Jeanne Atkins.

The state has a backlog of nearly 3,700 cases, and the audit says it’s partly because staffing levels have not kept up with increased demands for testing. It found the average turnaround time for evidence testing is 65 days, more than double the goal of 30 days.

Auditors say the Forensics Division has taken steps to improve efficiency, but recommend additional ways to improve the flow of cases and stop duplicating work.

The OSP has crime labs in Bend, Central Point, Clackamas, Pendleton and Springfield.

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