Colonel James F. Keathley, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway
Patrol, would like to highlight the Patrol’s Crime Laboratory Division. The
Patrol’s Crime Laboratory was founded in 1936, and has been providing
quality forensic science services to the state of Missouri for over 70
years. The partnership between law enforcement agencies and the crime
laboratory is a critical relationship in the criminal justice system.
During the first five months of 2007, the DNA Profiling Section analyzed
20,688 convicted offender DNA samples and uploaded them into the Combined
DNA Index System (CODIS). As a result, 276 hits occurred. (A "hit" is when
a forensic unknown is matched to an offender in the database.) These 276
hits translate into investigative leads for 24 homicides, 76 sexual assault
cases, 38 stealing/larceny cases, 90 burglaries, and other types of crimes.
These cases are usually old, unsolved cold cases.
The Crime Laboratory Division of the Missouri State Highway Patrol provides
forensic laboratory services in the areas of firearms, toolmarks, latent
fingerprints, DNA, toxicology, trace evidence, and drug chemistry at no
cost to criminal justice agencies at the local, state, and federal levels
through a network of eight strategically located laboratories. The regional
crime laboratories at Cape Girardeau (SEMO) and Joplin (MSSU) have now
merged with the Patrol crime laboratory system. These laboratories were
founded in 1969 and 1971, respectively, with federal funds, and have been
operating with limited state funding combined with funds raised locally.
With the support of Governor Blunt and the Missouri General Assembly,
funding was provided to merge the SEMO crime lab into the MSHP crime lab
system on July 1, 2006 and the MSSU crime lab into the MSHP system July 1,
2007. The merging of these two laboratories into the Patrol system will
ensure the stability of these laboratories and make certain that essential
forensic science services continue to be made available to local law
enforcement agencies in these regions of the state. In addition, the
Patrol is working with the city of Springfield to expand the present
limited service Springfield satellite laboratory into a full service
state-of-the-art forensic laboratory offering all the forensic services
currently available at the Jefferson City lab.
Seventy-five percent of the evidence submitted to the Patrol Crime
Laboratory system is from non-Patrol agencies, such as local police
departments and county sheriff’s offices.
From January 1 to May 31, 2007, law enforcement agencies submitted 9,021
criminal cases to the MSHP Crime Lab system. There were 20,827 individual
items of evidence requiring examination in these cases.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol Crime Laboratory Division is accredited
by the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors/Laboratory
Accreditation Board (ASCLD/LAB). The Patrol is working toward achieving
accreditation for the two laboratories recently added to its system.
"The recent changes in our laboratory system increase our forensic analysis
capability 30 percent," said Colonel Keathley. "I’m proud of the Patrol’s
Crime Laboratory Division and satellite laboratories. Our laboratory
personnel are highly trained professionals who apply their training every
day. Their work furthers the Patrol’s mission of service and protection."
’s Crime Laboratory