Police in Greeley, Loveland and Fort Collins, and the Larimer Sheriff’s Department and the Weld County Sheriff’s Department, are building their own forensics / sciences crime lab just west of Greeley. The need has arisen as serious cases like Sexual Assault (C.R.S. 18-3-402), Homicide and computer crimes involving DNA and other forensic evidence are on the increase, and CBI is too busy to be responsive to statewide demand. In some cases, it can take over a year to get evidence analyzed with CBI.
The regional crime lab will serve the northern Colorado agencies in Weld and Larimer County and greatly decrease the time it takes to make court filing decisions. Presently, with a Colorado Bureau of Investigation wait time of over a year, police and law enforcement must wait to file charges until scientific / forensics evidence becomes available. Take for instance a Greeley rape case (Sexual Assault), where a suspect has been identified but no DNA evidence is available. Police and Sheriffs might have to wait to make an arrest, or allow a rapist out on bond. During this wait, witnesses and suspects disappear.
Throughout Colorado, we find police waiting on scientific evidence all the time. Computer crimes like Sexual Exploitation of a Child (C.R.S. 18-6-403) can take up to six months for police computer labs to search hard-drives. As a result, innocent people have their computers taken by police and are forced to go out and buy a new one until the search is completed. You can’t just return a computer after using it for six months either.
We don’t know for sure, but we hope the agencies involved: Greeley Police, Loveland Police, Fort Collins Police, Weld Count y Sheriff’s Department, and the Larimer Count y Sheriff’s Department, will all produce a better law enforcement product with this new lab. The delays we face now are irresponsible and costly for innocent people. Prompt scientific analysis benefits everyone. As the saying goes, “justice delayed is justice denied”.
If you have a case which involves DNA, computer data or other scientific analysis, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call our experienced criminal defense attorneys at 303-731-0719. Together, we can protect your future.